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Related to Fortran: Fortran compiler, COBOL


see programming languageprogramming language,
syntax, grammar, and symbols or words used to give instructions to a computer. Development of Low-Level Languages

All computers operate by following machine language programs, a long sequence of instructions called machine code that is
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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



a programming language; more precisely, a family of such languages that evolved from the original version developed in 1957 in the USA under the supervision of J. W. Backus. The name derives from “formula translation,” referring to the translation of programs written in FORTRAN into machine language. FORTRAN contains statements for assignment, conditions, cyclic operation, subroutines, storage allocation, and real and complex variables, which may have logical, integer, real, or complex values; it also includes highly developed statements for input-output. FORTRAN is the most widely used programming language for scientific and engineering calculations. The language’s specifications are fixed in several national and international standards.


Pervin, Iu. A. Osnovy FORTRANa, Moscow, 1972.
Germain, C. Programmirovanie na IBM/360, 2nd ed. Moscow, 1973. (Translated from English.)
Fortran (programming textbook). Kiev, 1976.
American Standard FORTRAN: Approved March 7, 1966. New York, 1966.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


(computer science)
A family of procedure-oriented languages used mostly for scientific or algebraic applications; derived from formula translation.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.


(Formula Translation) The first and, for a long time, the most widely used programming language for numerical and scientific applications. The original versions lacked recursive procedures and block structure and had a line-oriented syntax in which certain columns had special significance.

There have been a great many versions.

The name is often written "FORTRAN", harking back to the days before computers were taught about lower case, but ANSI decreed, in about 1985 via the ANSI FORTRAN Technical Committee TC, that it should be "Fortran".

See also: Fortrash.

This article is provided by FOLDOC - Free Online Dictionary of Computing (


(FORmula TRANslator) The first high-level programming language and compiler, developed in 1954 by IBM. It was originally designed to express mathematical formulas, and although it has been used for business applications, it is primarily used for scientific, engineering and mathematical problems. FORTRAN IV is an ANSI standard, but FORTRAN V has various proprietary versions. The following FORTRAN example converts Fahrenheit to Celsius:

   write(6,*) 'Enter Fahrenheit '
   read(5,*) XFAHR
   XCENT = (XFAHR - 32) * 5 / 9
   write(6,*) 'Celsius is ', XCENT
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References in periodicals archive ?
Engineers are still using FORTRAN language for practical and scientific computations, since there exists a huge number of programs and sub-programs, collected in libraries created in this language.
Existing works are mainly applications of aspect languages for programming languages widely used in HPC, such as C [33] and Fortran [34].
For checking [I.sub.2] factor a comparison was also done between mentioned references and written program by FORTRAN. Scrutiny showed that the considered Integrals in both of references have some error (eq.8 and 9), also checking graphs showed that graph of Simons and Senturk reference (fig.5) has error and graph of Yang reference (fig.6) is correct.
NAG Fortran Builder is for the Microsoft Windows[R] environment and provides a Fortran-aware editor, build system, GUI debugger and help system for Fortran.
"With this latest release of PVF, PGI Fortran compilers and tools for multi-core processors and GPUs are available through Visual Studio 2010 to the large base of scientists and engineers developing for Windows," said Douglas Miles, director, The Portland Group.
NVIDIA today announced that a public beta release of the PGIA CUDA-enabled Fortran compiler is now available.
USASI Fortran has developed from ASA Fortran and has been specifically devised to assist program interchange.
Absoft's new Pro Fortran for Windows is the second product family from Absoft targeted toward AMD's multi-processor, multi-core systems.
Turned out he knew a lot about computers, and wrote us a FORTRAN program that was really slick.
Finally, Fortran 90/95 subprograms were written to implement arbitrarily precise operations with large integers.
SCORE's multi-language, multi-window, symbolic debugger recognizes C/EC++, Ada and Fortran syntax and expressions, and can view objects, expressions, call chains, execution traces, interspersed machine code, machine registers and program stacks.
Enhanced code generation capability ensures any math model can generate automatically the user's choice of C, Fortran, Java, MATLAB or Visual Basic software code for embedded applications.