Programs written in other languages: German

Everyone write programs in English don’t they… I mean programming language are written in English, so it goes to say that the rest of the program is in English too right?

Not so. We quickly forget that just because the language is in English does not mean the program is. Take for example the following program from the German book “PASCAL in 100 Beispielen” (1983). Can you figure out what it does?


It basically asks a farmer the length and width of his field, then calculates the m², following up with a request for the cost per m², and a calculation. If you code and run the program you can program figure out roughly what it is doing. Google translate would help with the German words. Although it’s not perfect. It translates the phrase in the first write statement to:  “Bauer Ignaz how long is your field.” For some reason it couldn’t translate Bauer to farmer. Give it the word by itself, and it does translate it. So what would a Pascal program look like if we converted the core keywords of Pascal to German?

program = Programm 
input = Eingang
output = Ausgabe
var = Var
begin = Start
end = Ende
write = schreiben
read = lesen
writeln = schreiben + Linie (Line) = schreibenLn
readln = lesen + Linie (Line) = lesenLn

Interesting? Some of the keywords are similar, some constructed in a similar manner to the English ones could be quite long.



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