On the Future of Computer Program Specification and Organization
RAND CORP SANTA MONICA CA
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The report summarizes the currently available methods of organizing computer programs--subroutine pyramid, generators, co-routines, and passed subroutines--and presents an alternative concept, program integration, based on use of the total context rather than specific procedures. Most of a typical program is devoted to housekeeping data--subroutine save areas, parameter passing mechanisms, indices, pointers, tree and list structures, dictionaries-- that have nothing to do with the specific problem but rather with its computer solution. Programs expressed entirely in problem-specific terms require implied rather than specified processing logical process specifications not affected by data representation dynamic linkage by the system of separate specifications, with dynamic adaptive modification at execution and dynamic requesting of information as required from the current context. Steps in this direction include CORC, DWIM, VERS, question-answering system, PLI ON-UNITS, Dataless Programming and Ports.
- Computer Programming and Software