On 02/02/18 19:03, Paul Gilmartin wrote:
On 2018-02-02, at 06:28:54, Martin Ward wrote:
The original Pascal string used a single byte for the length
at a time when a $70K machine had a mere 4K words of memory.

I don't recall seeing that in Wirth's Pascal User Manual and Report,
which I consider to describe the "original Pascal".  And:

    Early Pascal compilers
    The first Pascal compiler was designed in Z├╝rich for the CDC 6000 series
    mainframe computer family.

Hardly computers of the scale you're considering.

"A key platform was the Apple II, where it saw widespread use."
(according to the Wikipedia article you quoted). The Apple II had
between 4KB and 64KB of RAM, so a modern PC of a similar price
does indeed have around a million times as much memory.
(The Apple II cost $1,298 which is $5,242 in 2017 dollars).

A typical CDC 6500 had 64K of 60 bit words (about 500kB)
and cost over $60 million in 2017 dollars. I suspect that
today $60 million will buy you a machine with over 500GB of RAM,
so the million-to-one ratio still holds.


Dr Martin Ward | Email: mar...@gkc.org.uk | http://www.gkc.org.uk
G.K.Chesterton site: http://www.gkc.org.uk/gkc | Erdos number: 4

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