Object Not Callable, float?

Mel mwilson at the-wire.com
Mon Nov 30 07:07:53 CET 2009

W. eWatson wrote:

> I think PL/I, FORTRAN, ALGOL, etc. have reserved words.

Algol reserved syntactic tokens that resembled English words, but specified 
that they should be written in a different way from programmer-defined 
symbols, so no conflict was possible.  Published algorithms might have the 
tokens underlined or boldfaced.  In the Algol-60 I used, the tokens had to 
be enclosed in apostrophes.  None of this applied to library subroutine 
names; it was open season on those.

In FORTRAN and PL/I words were un-reserved to a degree that's really 
bizarre.  A short post can't begin to do it justice -- let's just mention 
that IF and THEN could be variable names, and DO 100 I=1.10 .  The syntaxes 
were carefully crafted so that context completely determined whether a 
symbol would be taken in a reserved sense or a programmer-defined sense, so 
any possibility for conflict was a syntax error.


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