52 votes

Why did 8-bit computers choose BASIC dialects as "de facto" command-line interface, instead of contemporary Shell/Lisp dialects?

People nowadays think of BASIC as something lesser and generally tied to puny microcomputers, but BASIC was the language of choice for many scientific, engineering and business computers in the 1970s. ...
Raffzahn's user avatar
  • 223k
21 votes
Accepted

Why did 8-bit computers choose BASIC dialects as "de facto" command-line interface, instead of contemporary Shell/Lisp dialects?

If we're not talking about BASIC as a programming language, but the operational commands that surround it, then the answer is that they surely reimplemented the command structure of existing ...
dave's user avatar
  • 35.6k
20 votes

Why was Logo created?

LOGO was intimately tied up with research into educational methods, and in teaching children how to use computers. The project proposal by Seymour Papert mentions "research on children's thinking ...
dave's user avatar
  • 35.6k
19 votes

Why did 8-bit computers choose BASIC dialects as "de facto" command-line interface, instead of contemporary Shell/Lisp dialects?

This was more of a marketing question than a technical one. The historical fact is that most vendors of 8-bit personal computers chose to include BASIC. The simple answer as to why they made this ...
Brian H's user avatar
  • 60.8k
11 votes

What was the earliest microcomputer Logo language implementation?

Wikipedia has a long list of Logo implementations, but I'd like to know what the earliest implementation on a microcomputer is or, more likely, what the earliest ones are if there isn't one with clear ...
ignos's user avatar
  • 111
9 votes

Programming languages that used degrees in trig functions?

The Atari BASIC (c) 1978, 1979, 1983 that came with the Atari 600 XL homecomputer had the DEG and RAD statements that not only decided upon the unit on input to SIN and COS, but also the unit on ...
Sep Roland's user avatar
  • 1,053
9 votes

Why was Logo created?

According to Wikipedia: Logo, second paragraph fragment The language was conceived to teach concepts of programming related to Lisp and only later to enable what Papert called "body-syntonic ...
Michel Keijzers's user avatar
7 votes

Why was Logo created?

Seymour Papert was a developmental psychologist, and in the early days of computers had lots of interesting ideas about how children might be taught using them. His work's online if you're interested. ...
Greenaum's user avatar
  • 410
7 votes

Why did 8-bit computers choose BASIC dialects as "de facto" command-line interface, instead of contemporary Shell/Lisp dialects?

BASIC was cheap on resources. Cheap on ROM, cheap on RAM, functional and productive. Nothing else came close -- not even Forth (which really required a disk drive to be truly usable, though there were ...
Will Hartung's user avatar
  • 12.3k
7 votes

Why did 8-bit computers choose BASIC dialects as "de facto" command-line interface, instead of contemporary Shell/Lisp dialects?

I see 3 main reasons: The 8-bit computers were targetting amateur computer enthusiasts, and a lot of beginner children. BASIC were specific to each machine to allow easy access to keyboard, sound and ...
Jean-François Fabre's user avatar
7 votes

Programming languages that used degrees in trig functions?

BASIC-G v2.0 for the PMD 85-2 contains commands DEG and RAD that switch the mode between radians (the default) and degrees for the functions SIN, COS and TANG. This was a new feature of the v2.0 over ...
Radovan Garabík's user avatar
6 votes

Programming languages that used degrees in trig functions?

Several BASIC dialects have the option to set the input unit for trigonometric functions. Sharp Pocket Computer BASIC have 2 means to set the input. Either by the setting button DEG/RAD/GRAD or by the ...
Patrick Schlüter's user avatar
5 votes

Programming languages that used degrees in trig functions?

Garry Kitchen's Gamemaker supported specifying a sprite movement direction as a value between 0 and 255; presumably this then used a lookup table for the cos/sin (dx/dy) values, possibly with some ...
Foon's user avatar
  • 1,099
5 votes

Why did 8-bit computers choose BASIC dialects as "de facto" command-line interface, instead of contemporary Shell/Lisp dialects?

Unlike many languages which require the use of a text editor separate from the language implementation, a BASIC interpreter includes a text editor built in. Further, someone with e.g. a VIC-20, a ...
supercat's user avatar
  • 36.3k
5 votes

Why did 8-bit computers choose BASIC dialects as "de facto" command-line interface, instead of contemporary Shell/Lisp dialects?

I started programming in 1981 at university & my first job (in 1982) was on an 8-bit Business Computer (The Durango). BASIC was one of the big three languages - FORTRAN and COBOL were compiled ...
Andy Dent's user avatar
  • 291
5 votes
Accepted

What was the earliest microcomputer Logo language implementation?

Given that much of the early '70s work on Logo was done at the MIT AI Lab (link from ignos), it seems quite possible that the microcomputer implementations that they started in 1980 were at least ...
cjs's user avatar
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4 votes
Accepted

What are the screen editor commands for MIT LOGO for the Apple II?

This disk image is probably built from files/aplogo/logo.299 in the PDP-10/its-vault repo on GitHub.com, or very similar source. That same directory has a documentation file, usage.doc, but ...
cjs's user avatar
  • 26.1k
3 votes

Why did 8-bit computers choose BASIC dialects as "de facto" command-line interface, instead of contemporary Shell/Lisp dialects?

Unix-style shells are optimized for environments with a lot of files in a relatively stable and fast to access, but complex structure - essentially, shells are programming languages that use files and ...
rackandboneman's user avatar
3 votes

Why was Logo created?

I have something to add. It's not exactly an answer, but it's too long for a comment. You are linking to 11Logo (which I put on GitHub, courtesy of CSAIL), but this wasn't the first version of Logo. ...
Lars Brinkhoff's user avatar
2 votes

Why did 8-bit computers choose BASIC dialects as "de facto" command-line interface, instead of contemporary Shell/Lisp dialects?

Isn't this discussed in the book, Decoding Liberation: The Promise of Free and Open Source Software By Samir Chopra, Scott D. Dexter? (See page 13). Basically, copyright issues and monetization ...
Ben Butzer's user avatar
2 votes

What was the earliest microcomputer Logo language implementation?

I can't answer the question "what was the earliest microcomputer Logo implementation", but I can give some details on one early microcomputer Logo implementation, namely MIT Logo. As ignos has ...
dirkt's user avatar
  • 27.4k
1 vote

What was the earliest microcomputer Logo language implementation?

Do you consider the LSI-11 a microcomputer? It's an implementation of a PDP-11 using an 8-bit microprocessor under the hood. 11Logo was ported to the LSI-11, which was the processor for the ...
Lars Brinkhoff's user avatar

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