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[AKFQuiz-users] about Pascal

From: Andreas K. Foerster
Subject: [AKFQuiz-users] about Pascal
Date: Thu, 19 Oct 2006 22:59:55 +0200
User-agent: Mutt/1.5.9i

Am Donnerstag, dem 19. Okt 2006 schrieb Martin Guy:

> >BTW. "argv[0]" is C. In Pascal it is "ParamStr(0)". We really speak
> >different languages. ;-)
> http://www.freaknet.org/martin/doc/bwk-on-pascal.html

[sarcasm on]
After reading this text, I was convinced, that it is absolutely
impossible to write something like my AKFQuiz in Pascal. Why didn't you 
tell me that, before I did do it. ;-) 
[sarcasm off]

Unfortunately that's a well known text. Nevertheless it's absolutely
rubbish! That "arguments" have nothing to do with modern Pascal Compilers
and even most compilers of that time were better than the ones, he

It is very common, when you have a product, that you talk bad about the 
competitive products. So I wouldn't give too much attention to the 
opinion of an author of another programming language (C)... Of course he
likes his own stuff more than anything else.

He talks about a lot of "limitations" that Pascal supposedly has. 
Well, I don't know any Pascal Compiler with that limitations... 
I don't know any of the compilers he mentions - and if it's true what 
he says, then they are really not worth it.

But you cannot convince me with arguments, that I know to be wrong!

And in that text are even some "arguments", which are just a matter 
of taste, but no limitation to what you can do.

Other people often also make unfair comparisons. A lot of people just 
know Turbo Pascal for DOS and compare that to C on a 32-bit platform.
They say, that you have a 640kB limit in "Pascal". But that really has
absolutely nothing to do with the language, but only with the system.
That means comparing apples with oranges. If you want to make a justified
comparison, compare Turbo Pascal with Turbo C for DOS! Then you will
see, that C is as limited under DOS as Pascal is. And Turbo C then was 
known to be inferior to Turbo Pascal.
Or compare a decent C with an equally decent Pascal Compiler, like GNU 
Pascal (GPC) or Free Pascal (FPC) or maybe Delphi (which is proprietary 
and not portable).

Well, I know C, but I don't like it! I barely haven't heard of any 
real arguments, which I couldn't prove wrong or which were just a 
question of taste. 

The only bad thing about Pascal I really agree to is, that there are
incompatible dialects. There are official standards for Pascal 
(ISO 7185) and Extended Pascal (ISO 10206), but most Compilers ignore 
the standards. :-( GNU Pascal is one of the few exceptions.
Well, GNU Pascal is available for nearly any recent platform, so that 
is no harm for the portability across different platforms.

Well, C has other disadvantages, which seem more severe to me. [...]

|But in its standard form (both current and proposed), Pascal is not
|adequate for writing real programs.

I agree, that the (unextended) standard isn't suitable for real
programming. But every compiler I know extends that. And the Extended
Pascal standard actually IS very good (if there only were more compilers
implementing that). I think, the Extended Pascal standard didn't exist 
yet, when the text was written. When he talks about "the proposed ISO
standard", he seems to talk about a revision of the unextended standard.

A lot of people are telling me, that you can't do this or that with
Pascal. But always I could prove them wrong. Mainly with my project 
AKFQuiz. :-)

Well, while it is true that most libraries are written in C. But it 
is absolutely possible to use them from Pascal (with a little more 
effort, but no disadvantages in the result). My program grquiz for 
example can be compiled with libSDL. I use it for video, keyboard, 
mouse and even sound effects with libSDL.

There are also language bindings to GTK. And with the project Lazarus
you actually have a RAD tool to develop GTK applications...

see also:


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