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I want to state that HTML is NOT a programming language. Having said that, I have no idea what OP ment by "computer language".

Agreed, so i jokefuly said HTML was my first computer language. and yes the question is to broad.

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HTML is short for HyperText Markup Language. It is a fourth generation computer language, which is just as valid to call a computer language as SQL (Structured Query Language) or PostScript, all fourth generation computer languages. What most of us think of as computer languages are the third generation languages, the procedural programming languages, like C, C++, C#, Java, JavaScript, various BASICs, Fortran, Cobol, Pascal, etc.

I will post an article I wrote later today that describes all these generations (1-5).

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HTML is not a programming language, it's a Markup Language. Saying HTML is a programming language is like saying XML is a programming language. Not even XAML is programming language.

However, you need to define what you mean by a "Computer Language" because technically English is a computer language (see Natural Language Processing, 6th Gen)

There is a definite distinction to be made :)

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@Ketsuekiame: The question is What was your first Computer Language? While most of us think of the third-generation procedurual languages when we hear Computer Lanugage, the 4GL stuff is still valid as a computer language. True, programming languages generally cover only generations 1-3, not 4 and 5, but using the higher generation languages properly and efficiently requires skill and expertise. I have reviewed many a webpage which needed clean-up, but that is generally easier than fixing a program written by a non-programmer, or a database designed by someone with little knowledge of database design.

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The difference being that you cannot program a computer, perform any functions, or query a dataset in this language. It is used to describe the layout. Would you describe any markup/template system as a 4th Generation Language?

You cannot use HTML to write a file to the hard drive, you cannot use it to query the database on the webserver. You cannot define a function in HTML, you cannot perform operations on data in HTML. This is the entire reason JavaScript exists and why you have to call WebServices.

The same for XML, would you call this a 4th Generation Language? You're creating Markup to describe something, just the same as HTML (Please also see XHTML).

SQL (Structure Query Language) does belong here though. It tries to be a 5th generation, but unfortunately can't be due to the complexity of the syntax. You can create functions in SQL, you can perform mathematics in SQL, you can perform data lookup and then peform operations on that data. Something you cannot do with HTML, because it's a descriptive template.

You cannot say that "I prefer HTML because it's easier to understand than C++" because that's comparing Apples to Oranges. They aren't just different generations, they're completely different entities.

I understand that you're saying Computer Language. But then you haven't defined what a Computer Language is. If you take it as literal, which is, a language that tells the computer how to perform, HTML still falls short, because it doesn't tell the computer how to do anything. At best, it hints to the software that picks it up how it wants to display the associated information. How each piece of software does this is different (IE, Chrome, Firefox all have small but identifiable differences in how the process and display a webpage from HTML)

To show you;

XML:

<HTML>
    <HEAD>
        <TITLE>This is the Title</TITLE>
    </HEAD>
    <BODY>
        <DIV class='myClass'>This is some text in my div</DIV>
    </BODY>
</HTML>

So if we agree that XML is not a computer language, here is how HTML would show a web page

HTML:

<HTML>
    <HEAD>
        <TITLE>This is the Title</TITLE>
    </HEAD>
    <BODY>
        <DIV class='myClass'>This is some text in my div</DIV>
    </BODY>
</HTML>

Therefore, if you qualify HTML as a Computer Language, you must ALSO qualify XML as a Computer Language, which it is not. Holding that XML is not a Computer Language, neither then, is HTML.

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Basic back in '77, then Fortran then COBOL - then I found VAXen and learned DCL and worked it from 84-99. Compaq bought DEC, gutted the company, keeping only the the the (OMG - brainfart, I can't remember what the DEC Micros were called -Alphas, maybe) I no longer have the attention span to learn to program though I keep menaing to pick up some language, then I realize I no longer have the drive or desire to stop gaming long enough to code, I am so sad.

I started programming on a TTY (teletype - worse than manual typewriters, hit a key wait a second or more for the letter to print, then repeart as necessary) that had a built-in papertape puncher. I wrote and saved my first D&D program in basic using the damn things. For class itself, I wrote my programs on paper blocked out for 80 characters that I wold then hand over to the students taking keypunch class who would punch my program into cards so I could take them to operator who would take the card deck and put it into a queue for evnetual running after hours in batch mode and i would get a listing of all my errors the next day so that I could rinse and repeat.

Edited by GrimJack

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I started programming on a TTY

At last. Someone else with paper tape experience. I remember the TTY. Amazing machines. Thousands of moving parts, each of which rubbed up against every other part. And the only way to oil it was to immerse it in a vat of lubricant. Compare that to the simlicity of the DecWriter.

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I wrote my programs on paper blocked out for 80 characters that I wold then hand over to the students taking keypunch class who would punch my program into cards so I could take them to operator who would take the card deck and put it into a queue for evnetual running after hours in batch mode and i would get a listing of all my errors the next day so that I could rinse and repeat.

That got me thinking about today. If you work on any typical mid-size project, then you write code in a certain style dictated by the project guidelines, usually including a maximum of 80-120 characters per line. Then, you send a request to your project manager to have your code merged to the main branch. He evaluates your code, merges it, and sends it off for a complete build and test suite, and the next day you get all the error and conflict report such that you can "rinse and repeat".

I guess the more things change the more they stay the same. Except that we no longer need to immerse our computers in a vat of lubricant, thank goodness for that!

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The first language i learned was HTML

It was scripting language but I was not interested at start
As time goes on I became interested in that language & score 88 out of 100 in the exam.
I never have thought I would have scored that much.

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Some of the first 'computer music' I heard was working with people who would hack (probably not the correct word) a chaintrain printer. The printer had a chain drive that contained 4 (sometimes more sometimes fewer) full character sets and a set of hammers and everytime a the correct letter was under the correct hammer it would be struck. The machines were awesome - the rythm was set by how often a set of hammers hit and the pitch was set by how far the chain had to move for the set of hammers to hit. It was really nerdy but not as nerdy as the guys who could get the 8in floppy drives to play Daisy.

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My university had an IBM 1620 before they got the System 360 and someone figured out that it would generate RF noise of different frequencies depending on what cards were being fed through the card reader. Some bright student was able to map the cards to frequencies and generate tunes that way.

<edit> that should have been IBM, not IMB. My keyboard is a tad dyselxic today</edit>

Edited by Reverend Jim

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I feel like the oldest person here. Isn't there anyone else who used paper tape or punch cards?

I'm quite jealous. I'd love to get my hands on a punch card and/or paper tape machine; there's probably something very wrong with me.

My first language was Q-Basic (early 90s).

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Mine was Fortran, I was taught it in my high school, but I did not study it at all,
never visited seminars on it. As a result: I almost failed the exam on it,
what saved me was my excellent program (which was written by my friend, not by me),
smth like "transposing a matrix". Then (and much later) it were Basic and Pascal.

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You know, guys,
actually I don't like computers, newest gadgets and so on.
What I'm very fond of is algorithms and new ideas
(ironically, for ~8 years I was trying to solve this problem: http://www.spoj.com/problems/RUNAWAY
no avail and no ideas until now). I miss (a bit) "true" science, like physics or chemistry or biology.

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what saved me was my excellent program (which was written by my friend, not by me),

So what you are saying is that you cheated.

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So what you are saying is that you cheated.

Or they worked together and it was mostly planned by his friend... Or he cheated...

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Also, on all first-year-students was imposed studying of a huge, very thick book titled "The history of Communist Party of Soviet Union" ("Istoriya KPSS"). Its cover was red and we called this book "brick". It was a true torture for me "to study" this book (not because I was an anticommunist (I was not, until now I keep on being a totally apolitical citizen), but because I counted this book as a silly wasting of time).
As for Fortran: my faculty was called "Faculty of experimental and theoretical physics", thus I decided that so far I need no Fortran (maybe later).

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Mac Pascal, back in 1985.
Then WATFIV (FORTRAN), Turing, Turbo C, C++, HTML, Javascript, CSS, some PHP.

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I'm embarrased to say that it was Visual Basic Express (or whatever was build into MS Word). I was 9 at the time, and went on to get a standalone VB IDE, playing with VB for the next two or three years, at which point, I stated on HTML4.0 and Windows Batch Scripting Two years later. Perl came with a bit of overlap, then C++, C, PHP, XHTML, CSS, Python, Lua, Assembly were all part of an inevitable snowball...

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i started with c and then moved on to html, css and php, later i moved on to java but i struggled with it till i started c#

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