Acerbic Resonance

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Programmer Mel

So, I was just getting settled in for my workday (aka getting my daily fix of /.) and I ran across a link to a neat article about Mel the Programmer.  Well written and entertaining, this article adds some neat perspective on where programming has been compared with where it is now.  Set in the golden age of computing when Real Programmers™ wrote everything in raw machine code (sickos), this article reminded me somewhat of the stories I heard about my father when I was a kid.  Now, dad was not a programmer by profession, but did a little when working on his Ph.D. at CalTech.  Back then, programming required punch cards and meticulous planning.  I still remember the punch cards that my mom kept for years down in our sewing room into which my dad had punched some of his programs – only these were for my mom, and they were punched in the form of a heart, or "I Love You" written vertically and spanning 3 cards.  Sometimes I wonder if my interest in computing in general and programming in particular has roots sitting in my childhood basement, staring in wonder at those old punch cards.

Thanks, Dad.

Here, then is the story of Mel


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