Real Programmers Hack the Machine Code [was: Re: Job Posting (.04K Reward!) Jr. Linux Admin + Windows Support]

Charles Curley charlescurley at
Sat Sep 9 10:22:34 MDT 2006

On Sat, Sep 09, 2006 at 08:01:25AM -0600, Josh Coates wrote:
> > My only problem with the last job you posted is I'm not a C 
> > programmer nor do I want to become one at this point.
> ooh - this sounds like an invitation to go off about what a shame it is that
> software engineers aren't being taught or learning system languages like C.
> ;-)
> does this freak anyone else out, or is it just me?
> i mean, java, perl, python etc are fine languages and i'm sure C# is
> great and all - but holy crap, if you aren't proficient in C, it
> just seems to me that you are 'half' and engineer, and will never
> reach your full potential as a career software developer.

Oh, come on, Josh. Real programmers hack the machine language
directly. Which is how I got started with microcomputers: hacking
machine language on a KIM I, which shipped with just over 1 KB of
RAM, a hex keyboard and a six digit seven segment display.

The assembler, upper case only ASCII keyboard, 20 character display
and printer and 4K of RAM on Rockwell's AIM 65 were sheer
delight. What ever would I do with all that RAM?

And of course there isn't room on either for Ron Cain's Tiny C (never
mind that he wrote it for the 8080), never mind a full up K&R C.

Besides, K&R C is nothing but Macro 11 warmed over and gussied up for
people afraid to get their hands dirty with assembler.


Charles Curley                  /"\    ASCII Ribbon Campaign
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