Interactive MOnitor Language 

for Interactive MOnitor Language

Language to enable control and monitoring of computer aided design

  • Bracchi, Giampio and Somalvico, Marco "Man-machine communication in computer-aided tolerance analysis of electronic circuits" Computer Aided Design 2, 1 (Autumn, 1969), pp27-31. view details
  • Bracchi, Giampio and Somalvico, Marco "An interactive software system for computer-aided design: an application to circuit project" pp537-545 view details DOI Abstract: The characteristics of an interactive software system, intended to constitute an interface between designer and computer during various steps of the design process, are presented. The main emphasis is given to the description of the features of the two high level user oriented languages, operating at different levels, on which the interaction is based.
    The first one is IMOL, an interactive monitor language, which is designed to perform the overall and control functions of the software system; its design criteria provide the user with commands which are both simple and efficient in order to perform all the functions needed in computer-aided circuit design.
    The second one is COIF, a circuit oriented graphic language, which is designed to describe, generate, and manipulate graphic problem specifications~ it is an extension of Fortran with graphic-type variables, so that the designer who is familiar with Fortran need not learn a new language.
    The application to computer-aided circuit design is in particular examined; on the other hand, the adopted design criteria provide sufficient generality to extend the use of the two languages to different computer-assisted applications. Extract: IMOL
    IMOL is an interactive monitor language designed to perform the overall control functions of the software system. Through its design criteria the user is provided with simple and efficient commands in order to perform all the functions needed in computer-aided design. Extract: Introduction
    In analyzing the activities involved in the design process, one finds cemfin tasks which require calculations and repetitive operations, and other tasks which require invention and adaptation to unanticipated situations. While the first ones may be efficiently performed by a computer, the second ones need human imagination and experience.
    In fact, computer and matt show roughly complementary characteristics. Computational speed, rigor in numerical analysis, repetitive operations, presentation of results in a methodical way, lack of bias toward early solutions belong to the computer. Invention and selection of potential schemes, ease of adaptation to new problems, and appeals to experience belong to the designer.
    Designer and computer may operate together efficiently if a natural and fast man-machine communication is established.
    On-line use of the computer with graphics terminals provides both fast interaction and an efficient communication. Hence, computer-aided design has evolved from batch processing to display-type conversational operation The potential of such interaction has not always been realized, became the use of interactive data processing systems often involves complex programnfing.
    The purpose of this paper is to describe the characteristics of an interactive software system intended to provide a satisfactory and general solution to the problems related to the development of a suitable interface between man and computer for the various steps of the design process.
    The approach which is presented is intended to provide a valid reply to most of the demands which arise for the extension of the role of graphic units in computeraided design. The main emphasis is given to the description of the features of the two high level user oriented languages, operating at different levels, on which the interaction is based.
    Although the software system has been specifically designed for use with the circuit design programs developed at the Politecnico di Milano, its organization and its design criteria turn out to be well suited for many other computer-aided design problems involving interactive operations.
    The software system has been designed to operate on a multiprogrammed central computer connected to a satellite graphics terminal with computational capability.
    It is composed of application programs and interactive programs, and it has been designed in a modular fashion to allow easy modification and expansion; it is designed to be machine independent as well.
    By providing tools for working at a high level of abstraction, the proposed interactive graphics system is of relevant utility since it enables the designer to state and solve his problems without getting involved in a mass of i~plementation dependent details.

          in [ACM] CACM 13(09) (Sep 1970) view details
  • Cotton, I. W. review of Bracchi and Somalvico 1970 view details Abstract: This article primarily describes two higher-level languages developed as part of a computer- aided design system. Only one of the two languages (and less than half the article) however, is worthy of close examination.

    The first language described is IMOL, an interactive monitor language "which is designed to perform the overall and control functions of the software system." Actually, the language is superfluous: nearly all its functions, such as naming and assigning storage files, and editing programs and data, may be accomplished by use of the executive control language of the computer on which the system is implemented (EXEC-8 on the UNIVAC 1108). Indeed, the executive control language may be more terse and easy to use than IMOL.

    The second language, COIF, a circuit-oriented graphic language, is of greater interest. COIF is an extension of FORTRAN that permits the topology and electronic characteristics of circuits to be easily described. The language appears to be well-designed for its purpose, and may be a candidate for implementation on other machines.

    The rest of the article claims to be an example of the use of the languages and the system for a circuit analysis application. This consists entirely of Icon statements ad nauseam, with the application program and COIF statements dismissed with a wave of the hand. Read the three pages describing the COIF language; ignore the rest.
          in ACM Computing Reviews 12(05) May 1971 view details
  • Sammet, Jean E., "Roster of Programming Languages 1972" 132 view details
          in Computers & Automation 21(6B), 30 Aug 1972 view details
  • Stock, Marylene and Stock, Karl F. "Bibliography of Programming Languages: Books, User Manuals and Articles from PLANKALKUL to PL/I" Verlag Dokumentation, Pullach/Munchen 1973 295 view details Abstract: PREFACE  AND  INTRODUCTION
    The exact number of all the programming languages still in use, and those which are no longer used, is unknown. Zemanek calls the abundance of programming languages and their many dialects a "language Babel". When a new programming language is developed, only its name is known at first and it takes a while before publications about it appear. For some languages, the only relevant literature stays inside the individual companies; some are reported on in papers and magazines; and only a few, such as ALGOL, BASIC, COBOL, FORTRAN, and PL/1, become known to a wider public through various text- and handbooks. The situation surrounding the application of these languages in many computer centers is a similar one.

    There are differing opinions on the concept "programming languages". What is called a programming language by some may be termed a program, a processor, or a generator by others. Since there are no sharp borderlines in the field of programming languages, works were considered here which deal with machine languages, assemblers, autocoders, syntax and compilers, processors and generators, as well as with general higher programming languages.

    The bibliography contains some 2,700 titles of books, magazines and essays for around 300 programming languages. However, as shown by the "Overview of Existing Programming Languages", there are more than 300 such languages. The "Overview" lists a total of 676 programming languages, but this is certainly incomplete. One author ' has already announced the "next 700 programming languages"; it is to be hoped the many users may be spared such a great variety for reasons of compatibility. The graphic representations (illustrations 1 & 2) show the development and proportion of the most widely-used programming languages, as measured by the number of publications listed here and by the number of computer manufacturers and software firms who have implemented the language in question. The illustrations show FORTRAN to be in the lead at the present time. PL/1 is advancing rapidly, although PL/1 compilers are not yet seen very often outside of IBM.

    Some experts believe PL/1 will replace even the widely-used languages such as FORTRAN, COBOL, and ALGOL.4) If this does occur, it will surely take some time - as shown by the chronological diagram (illustration 2) .

    It would be desirable from the user's point of view to reduce this language confusion down to the most advantageous languages. Those languages still maintained should incorporate the special facets and advantages of the otherwise superfluous languages. Obviously such demands are not in the interests of computer production firms, especially when one considers that a FORTRAN program can be executed on nearly all third-generation computers.

    The titles in this bibliography are organized alphabetically according to programming language, and within a language chronologically and again alphabetically within a given year. Preceding the first programming language in the alphabet, literature is listed on several languages, as are general papers on programming languages and on the theory of formal languages (AAA).
    As far as possible, the most of titles are based on autopsy. However, the bibliographical description of sone titles will not satisfy bibliography-documentation demands, since they are based on inaccurate information in various sources. Translation titles whose original titles could not be found through bibliographical research were not included. ' In view of the fact that nany libraries do not have the quoted papers, all magazine essays should have been listed with the volume, the year, issue number and the complete number of pages (e.g. pp. 721-783), so that interlibrary loans could take place with fast reader service. Unfortunately, these data were not always found.

    It is hoped that this bibliography will help the electronic data processing expert, and those who wish to select the appropriate programming language from the many available, to find a way through the language Babel.

    We wish to offer special thanks to Mr. Klaus G. Saur and the staff of Verlag Dokumentation for their publishing work.

    Graz / Austria, May, 1973
          in Computers & Automation 21(6B), 30 Aug 1972 view details