I find this quote peculiar because Knuth seems to have envisaged many
of the technological marvels I had the pleasure to experience:
virtual mapping programs, which later emerged as e.g. Google Earth
and Google Maps in the early and mid-2000's;
features in integrated development environments, e.g. go to the definition
of a procedure from its use, or list the uses of a procedure from its
means of abstraction in programming languages, hereunder functions,
objects, type classes, monads, and all their polymorphic varients;
means of abstraction in systems programming, hereunder libraries,
processes, servers, and user interfaces in general.
I find this quote suggestive because it transcends all these areas.
There seems to be a fundamental human drive to enable the exploration and work
with a problem domain at varying levels of detail. I would perhaps go as far as
to say that a truly structured programming paradigm enables both a
declarative and an imperative view of a procedure. Which view
is best for the programmer, at any given time, depends on the circumstances of
I find this quote peculiar because Gustedt puts down in writing what
we are often negligent of in programming communities. Sometimes, we put our
programming practices at an unjustified altar.
I find this quote suggestive because it applies far beyond C, in
virtually any programming community, and perhaps even, as noted, in "all human
I find this quote peculiar because there are so many general-purpose
programming languages in existance, often claiming to enable some (other) good
ideas to be elegantly expressed. General-purpose programming languages capture
perhaps both a zeitgeist and a range of domains. They were invented
for a purpose—because existing languages didn't seem to enable the elegant
expression of some new ideas.
I find this quote suggestive because new ideas in new times and new
domains may demand new programming languages. A programing language is a tool,
and sometimes, we need new tools to do successful work (see next quote).
I find this quote peculiar because "tools" and "work" proliferate
human endeavours. From carpentry and metalworks to programming, Computer
Science, and Mathematics.
I find this quote suggestive because sometimes, making the right tools
first, makes for more enjoyable subsequent work. "Work" is also an essential
ingredient of learning, so students should be handed useful tools to enable
them to learn through laborious, but successful work.
I find this quote peculiar because it has applications in all of the
computer-aidable human faculties.
I find this quote suggestive many human faculties remain to be aided
by computers due to the lack of good programming notations for aiding those