Dijkstra during the 1960s. The following post refers to my journal article about the Dijkstra of the late 1950s and early 1960s. Subsequent posts on this page either discuss this article or address EWDs that Dijkstra wrote during the 1960s.

Influence of ALGOL 60 on Hardware Design in the USA

9-11 May 1961

Among Dijkstra's possessions is the booklet of the 1961 Western Joint Computer Conference which was held in Los Angeles. The booklet contains the abstracts of the presented lectures, including:

  • J. McCarthy's `A Basis for a Mathematical Theory of Computation' and
  • R.S. Barton's `A New Approach to the Functional Design of a Digital Computer'.

The abstract of the latter paper is briefly discussed here because it may help us understand how ALGOL 60 influenced hardware design in the USA during the early 1960s.


Dijkstra and Van Wijngaarden

Here's a comment from another reviewer for my paper on `Dijkstra's Rallying Cry...':

ALGOL 60 Programming School

5 and 6 April, 1961
ALGOL 60 Programming School at Brighton Technical College, April 1961

The Dijkstra family collected many things, including an advertisement in NATURE on 4 February 1961, which mentioned the ALGOL 60 Programming School to be held at Brighton Technical College on 5 and 6 April 1961.


Dijkstra the Linguist?

Is it correct to say that Dijkstra reasoned linguistically during the late 1950s and early 1960s? A reviewer of the research paper `Dijkstra's Rallying Cry ...' expressed his reservations about this matter.

In the reviewer's own words:

Computer efficiency

Here is what a reviewer had to say about the research paper `Dijkstra’s Rallying Cry ...':

The paper is, in essence, about an argument of generality versus computer efficiency. The argument was eventually settled in favour of the former due to the enormous advances in electronic technology. Today, computer efficiency is not an issue any more.

Is this correct? The last sentence seems to contradict Martin Reiser’s “law” which states that


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