RCL - ROADKILL COMMAND LANGUAGEEver get tired of whatever language you program in, or interface with your computer in?
Ever get tired of all the hype about languages?
Ever get tired of the industry's announcing Yet Another Language just about every day?
Us, too! So we developed our own!
RCL (Roadkill Command Language) will replace every other language you use, no matter how old or new, no matter how esoteric or common, no matter how brilliant or brain dead.
A Brief History of ThymeAfter inhaling a few too many fumes in the ARL (Aging Roadkill Lab) while working on ways to speed up the "ripening process" of too fresh roadkill, a couple of our people had to be rushed to RRU's P. D. Anderson Medical Clinic for emergency treatment. While undergoing emergency brain cell regeneration, Vice President Suzi Stryrofoam went into a deep coma. When she recovered several days later, she immediately sat down and wrote the specifications for RCL, based on what she called "a four day long, non-stop, violent nightmare of epic proportions, experienced during my coma". The internal code name for this project, generated by our random code name generator (which runs on a dedicated, Sinclair ZX-80 server), wa "Thyme".
Stealth Roadkill TechnologyThe initial design for Thyme called for a simple implementation, based on a top down, single pass, LALR, LIFO, Groacian grammar compiler, was turned into reality in three days. It ran like a scalded rabbit with a JATO pack, in only 12KB of memory, compiling 12,378 lines of code per second (LCPS) on an old Dell 25MHz 386 box, which was later determined to be powered off during the tests. No other language compiles this quickly, in this little RAM, on a non-functioning system!
But we wanted more - we wanted to be able to easily convert every program ever written into RCL code - automatically. As a result, we now use a table-driven parser, and a twelve step compiler (based on licensed AA technology), which will optimize and translate every known computer language, optimize, save and compile the RCL into assembler, optimize and assemble that, and link the object code into a runtime executable.
The astute among you will notice that we have listed less than twelve steps. That's because the others are secret. But we will confess that some of them are involved in cross-assembling, cross-linking, and cross-dressing, so that Thyme can produce executables to run on any hardware, under any OS. Period.
Details, DetailsHere are just a few of the languages RCL can translate and compile:ALGOL 60, awk, Basic, C, csh, C++, CP/M, COBOL, DOS, Etruscan, FORTRAN, Guile, HTML, I, Java, JCL, Klingon, L, MIXAL, Money, MUMPS, NOS, Norwegian, Objective C, OS/32, Pascal, QWERTY, REXX, Subjective C, Texan, Urdu, VisiCALC, WUSS, X10 and X11, Ynot, and zsh.
We wanted RCL to have the best of all worlds, so we raided all those other languages for features. Here are just a few of the many, many features of RCL and their origins:REM - remark (stolen from Bill Gates's personal copy of Basic) mod - modulo arithmetic (stolen from FORTRAN) ** - raise to the power of (stolen from MIT's NatzohTinyPascal) ^ - ex-or (stolen from EE Digital Logic 1010 in a Georgia Tech lab) ADD-ONE-TO-IP-ADDRESS - ported from ADD-ONE-TO-COBOL HCF - stolen from UMAL (Universal Microprocessor Assembly Language) ::: - swiped from Subjective-C
PricingWe want to rule the world with this, so we looked at how other successful languages were priced. The most profitable ones all work pretty much the same way, so we stuck with that. It's a complex scheme, but here's the gist of it.
- We work to get it bundled into the most common operating systems for free.
- We offer free technical support, unlimited copies, etc.
- We start a standards process.
- We add a bunch of new features, and send Beta copies to a gazillion people.
- We let the beta last for about two years, or until we are certain that over half the code in existence includes the new features of RCL 2.0 .
- We terminate the Beta with extreme prejudice, and announce an exhorbitant, or even extortionate, pricing model, most likely the following:Personal Edition (single user, single CPU): $499US Professional Edition (single user, single CPU): $999US Professional Five Pack: $2,490US Floating License (single user, multiple CPUs): $1,499US Site License (multiple users, single CPU): $399US/user Unlimited License (multiple users, many CPUs): $10,000,000US
- Repeat as necessary.
DistrbutionWe examined a variety of distribution schemes, and most of them, quite frankly, suck raw eggs through a tiny little straw. we have developed a bold, new approach, utilizing proven technologies from other arenas:
This is how Micro$oft does it. This is how UNIX was handled. It will be wonderful! You will use RCL!
- The Internet Worm - we reworked Mr. Morris's code (strangely enough, he never copyrighted it), and will soon have it running to traverse the entire Internet, installing RCL 1.0 on every system it finds. This time, it won't crash the Internet, though.
- The Good Thymes Email - we will send out a warning email about the dreaded Good Thymes Virus, which, if you open mail containing that in the header, installs a virus onto your system, and urging you to forward copies of the email to everyone you know. What will actually happen is that the email you forward will check to see whether RCL 1.0 is installed on your system; if not, it will install it.
- Get Rick Quick! - we will pay modest fees to such celebrities as The Spam Queen and Castroil and Spiegel (The Green Card Attorneys), who promise to reach gazillions of people on the Internet for a low, low price per address. We expect that this alone will generate lots of good PR for us, about on the same level as if we hired Dennis Rodman to run our support lines.
- AOL - We will get AOL to send diskettes to every home in the known universe, with RCL in place of their software.
- The Medium is the Message - We will bribe CD, disk and tape manufacturers and duplicators to sneak copies on to every piece of recordable media they sell.
- RCL Everywhere - We'll bundle it into newspapers, magazines, and books, on CD. We'll have restaurants pass them out instead of after dinner mints. Airlines will give them out instead of peanuts (RCL is hypoallergenic!)
Last updated: 25 October 2001
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