COSC 4360 Assignment 1

Purpose: Provide the students with an opportunity to do an in-depth evaluation of a computer programming language. This will include a research paper and a class presentation.

Due: Beginning of class on October 3, 2001 (There will be other assignments which are due before this one.)


1. You will select a programming language as given below. Write a research paper on the programming language that summarizes the languages by discussing its key features, especially features that were originally introduced in this language. You will also use the criteria given in chapter 1 of the text to evaluate the language. You may add additional evaluation criteria if it is appropriate to your programming language. There should be numerous specific examples. You should compare and contrast your language with other major computer languages. You should include a discussion of which programming domains, from chapter 1 of the text, that this language is applicable to and why. This paper is to have 5 - 7 pages of content, not including the cover page, table of contents, program listings, figures, tables, appendixes, and bibliography. If you quote something or use major ideas from an outside source, they must be cited (a footnote that gives the article/book title and page number that has a full citation in the bibliography will be fine). The bibliography may be in either APA or MLA styles.

This paper will require research beyond the text, although you may use the text as one reference. I want significantly more depth than is provided in the text. Fell free to disagree with our text's author (I certainly do in several areas), as long as you justify your disagreement (this is worth extra credit). You may not reference Wikipedia in your papers, but should use it as a starting point to guide you to seminal references on your language.

2. Prepare a 5 - 7 minute class presentation to be presented on either October 3 or 5th. This presentation should summarize the information in your paper and give the students a feel for programming in your language.

3. The class will be determining the language that each person be reviewing on August 31st. I am scheduled to be on jury duty that day and may or may not be present! I highly suggest that you study chapter 2 and be prepared with 1st, 2nd, and 3rd choices. What I need by the end of class is a list with each students name on it and the programming language that they will be reviewing. No two students may review the same language! One student must review Plankalkul (bonus points will be given for this review).

Grading Criteria: A grading criteria for the paper and presentation is here. This paper/presentation will be worth 25% of your programming assignments grade.