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6. AWK > Unix and Its Culture

Unix and Its Culture

Early Unix culture seemed to promote the idea that when you have a problem, you write a little compiler or a little language to solve it. At what point do you decide it’s the right approach to create a language to solve a specific problem instead of a program in another language?

Al: There are thousands and thousands of programming languages in the world today, and one can ask why these languages arose. Virtually every area of human endeavor has its own jargon. Musicians have a special notation for writing music; lawyers use jargon to talk about the law; chemists have special diagrams for describing atoms and molecules and how they get combined. It’s not unnatural for people to say, “Let’s create a language around these notations for solving problems arising in a given area.”


  

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