August 08, 2002
Go To Statement Considered Harmful

Edsger W. Dijkstra, the author if the seminal paper Go To Statement Considered Harmful, died yesterday.

Go To Statement Considered Harmful was the opening shot of the structured programming wars.

Edsger W. Dijkstra quotes:

"The competent programmer is fully aware of the strictly limited size of his own skull; therefore he approaches the programming task in full humility, and among other things he avoids clever tricks like the plague" (from 1972 Turing Award Lecture)

"Program testing can best show the presence of errors but never their absence"

"Computer Science is no more about computers than astronomy is about telescopes."

"If you don't know what your program is supposed to do, you'd better not start writing it."

"The use of COBOL cripples the mind; its teaching should, therefore, be regarded as a criminal offence."

"The price of reliability is the pursuit of the utmost simplicity. It is a price which the very rich find most hard to pay."

"The question of whether a computer can think is no more interesting than the question of whether a submarine can swim."

Posted to Software development by Simon Brunning at August 08, 2002 01:46 PM
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