Lars Hellström <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> You conspicuously omit programming languages, which I would put as a
> forerunner of spreadsheets (the less about said, the better), and
> probably also of modern calculators that attempt to display
> formulae. So it probably all boils down to "because that's how it was
> in FORTRAN" (which, if memory serves, ignored spaces).
not entirely. originally designed for programmers writing programs on
cards, and had fixed layout (which card punches could be set up for).
iirc (it's a long time)
cols 1-5 label number or blank
col 6 continuation mark or blank
col 7+ programming statement (optionally continued on next card, as
signified by the continuation mark)
that's what the spec said (modulo my feeble memory). the compiler i
learned with (written by the guy who lectured us on the language) had
some relaxation of the rules. iirc, column 1 blank->code, lines not
restricted to 80 chars long.
the _real_ programming language[*] that ignores spaces, is dna.
[*] note that i don't claim that fortran isn't real...
surreal would be nearer the mark.