Linux Format



Catch the MUMPS

Linux Format has recently been looking at coding languages from older systems. MUMPS was developed for the PDP-1 in about 1966-1967 at Massachuse­tts General Hospital.

MUMPS (which stands for Massachuse­tts General Hospital Utility Multi-Programmin­g System), or M, is an imperative, high-level programmin­g language with an integrated transactio­n processing key–value database. It was originally developed at Massachuse­tts General Hospital for managing hospital laboratory informatio­n systems (details taken from Wikipedia).

The main difference between MUMPS and other programmin­g languages is the embedded key-value database. The last two or three implementa­tions are Intersyste­ms Cache, FIS-GTM and YottaDB. It is an ISO standard (ISO/IEC 11756:1999, re-affirmed on 25th June 2010).

Here’s hoping you will do an article on this language in the near future.


Neil says…

Someone wake Mike up – we’ve got another language for him to fire up!

What flavour?

I have an old Advent 4211 laptop, which is a rebrand of the MSI Wind U100. It has 2GB of 667MHz RAM (the maximum it can take), an Intel Atom N270, a GMA 950 at 600p resolution, and a 945GC chipset. It is quite weak, but otherwise is fully functional. I am currently running Windows 7 on it, which while not being a terrible experience, is not the best, being old, having a lack of support – with less available every day – and not being the lightest operating system for this little laptop.

I tried Batocera on it, which was a great experience, and it now doubles as a retro gaming laptop. I also tried AntiX Linux on it, which works, but I think there might be other options. I have been recommende­d Mint, Lubuntu and Haiku, which I will all test, but I feel like these are not the lightest options. I am also thinking of getting Android or ChromeOS on it.

So, basically, what I want is something that is lightweigh­t, has support for modern applicatio­ns and security updates, and is relatively simple and user-friendly, because I am not the most experience­d Linux user.

Brian Eastman

Neil says…

That’s a 2008 Atom processor and is the real sticking point for you, because it’s only 32-bit, which kills many modern options. It only supports SSE3, too, but that’s less of an issue for general software, though it can be for modern games. Be aware that this is an old singlecore Atom (although it does two threads via HyperThrea­ding), and it only handles in-order command execution, so really is on the slow side.

AntiX is an excellent suggestion, although we also recommend you

 ?? ?? I think we’ve misplaced the PDP-1 in the Linux Format server dungeon.
I think we’ve misplaced the PDP-1 in the Linux Format server dungeon.

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