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(Basic CPL) A British systems language developed by Richards in 1969 and descended from CPL (Combined Programming Language). BCPL is low-level, typeless and block-structured, and provides only one-dimensional arrays. Case is not significant, but conventionally reserved words begin with a capital. Flow control constructs include: If-Then, Test-Then-Else, Unless-Do, While-Do, Until-Do, Repeat, Repeatwhile, Repeatuntil, For-to-By-Do, Loop, Break and Switchon-Into-Case-Default-Endcase. BCPL has conditional expressions, pointers, and manifest constants. It has both procedures: 'Let foo(bar) Be command' and functions: 'Let foo(bar) = expression'. 'Valof $(..Resultis..$)' causes a compound command to produce a value. Parameters are call-by-value.

Program segments communicate via the global vector where system and user variables are stored in fixed numerical locations in a single array.

The first BCPL compiler was written in AED. BCPL was used to implement the TRIPOS operating system, which was subsequently reincarnated as AmigaDOS.

["BCPL - The Language and its Compiler", Martin Richards & Colin Whitby-Stevens, Cambridge U Press 1979].


Oxford BCPL differed slightly: Test-Ifso-Ifnot, and section brackets in place of $( $).

The original INTCODE interpreter for BCPL is available for Amiga, Unix, MS-DOS ftp://wuarchive.wustl.edu/systems/amiga/programming/languages/BCPL/.

A BCPL compiler bootstrap kit with an INTCODE interpreter in C was written by Ken Yap <ken@syd.dit.csiro.au>.
This article is provided by FOLDOC - Free Online Dictionary of Computing (foldoc.org)


(Basic Combined Programming Language) A language developed in the late 1960s for creating compilers for other programming languages. BCPL was the grandfather of C because B, a version of BCPL, was the precursor to C. See B and C.
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Santander has agreed to provide BCPL with a multi-million pound term facility to support the acquisitions.
Jack Barrett, from Cornerstone Asset Managers, BCPL's investment manager, said: "We are delighted with the acquisitions and the support that we have received from Santander Corporate Banking.
Prabhat Singh, Director (Marketing), GAIL, said, "The manufacturing process of BCPL products will add gas-based process in polymer production wherein GAIL Petrochemicals already use the slurry and the solution processes."