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I have to wonder what impact a fundamental shift in hardware would have on any language(s). It has been a while and I have not gone back and re-examined this, but assuming a fundamental advance in hardware, is there much of a future for anything we know?

Hardware advances tend to be transparent to languages, the OS hides them behind established device/file paradigms.

Memristors are just memory. The fact that it's persistent will be managed by the OS rather then languages.

Silicon photonics speed up memory and device access, but is otherwise transparent to languages.

Even where hardware advances can be usefully utilised at the language level -- virtual memory; threading -- it tends to be years if not decades before support filters into languages.

Hardware supported virtual memory has been around forever; but at the language level we still pretend that we have a single, linear memory space where the stack and heap occupy the same space despite the fact that in reality they occupy different chunks of physical ram.

Threading is ubiquitous in hardware now, and available to many languages; but no-one has yet really found the sweet spot for how to encapsulate them; hence we have either raw low-level; or some, mostly inappropriate, metaphor for them.

Basically, I don't think hardware really affects languages. There will always be a C/C++ compiler; and most other compilers and interpreters are built on top of that.

Maybe someone will come up with a radically different architecture; but I see no signs of it yet.


With the rise and rise of 'Social' network sites: 'Computers are making people easier to use everyday'
Examine what is said, not who speaks -- Silence betokens consent -- Love the truth but pardon error.
"Science is about questioning the status quo. Questioning authority".
In the absence of evidence, opinion is indistinguishable from prejudice.

In reply to Re^2: The future of Perl? by BrowserUk
in thread The future of Perl? by BrowserUk

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