NULL - The Ultimate Computer Language
BASKING RIDGE, NJ - Bell Laboratories has formally announced what it believes is the ultimate
computer science language. Described by Iusi Nogoto, the foremost Japanese
fourth generation language expert, as "the only truly elegant computer language
ever devised." NULL, as it is known, was developed by the same department that
originally invented the wrong number, the busy signal, and the phrase, "The
number you have reached is not in service."
NULL is the culmination of five
years of work by a team of language designers and computer science
mathematicians. The final breakthrough occurred when operating system expert
Hugh Nicks suggested that if removing GOTOs was good then why not scrap IF
statements as well, since they usually required typing too many characters
anyway. This brilliant concept was extended through a series of complex
mathematical theorems that form the basis of the NULL language.
layman's terms by Sally Kahn-Vallee, electrical engineer and PROM reader, "Like
first we tossed out the bath water, then the baby, and like, finally, the
whole tub." The elegance and conciseness of NULL can thus be proven to be a
direct consequence of the fact that the language as defined contains no
statements at all. While at first glance this may seem a drawback, in fact, it
is a major improvement over any other language. A few of the numerous reasons
- Highly structured constructs.
- Advanced data hiding techniques.
- A NULL compiler can be written first in NULL without ever needing to be
written in a lower level language.
- Since there are no statements to compile, in fact, no compiler need ever be
written in the first place, saving time and money.
- Since there will be no compilers, no new releases will ever be issued hence
maintenance is reduced.
- NULL programs are highly portable and totally machine independent.
- NULL programs compile and execute rapidly. An important point to note is
that with the addition of a small amount of language dependent code, e.g.
PROC/END etc., all NULL programs can be compiled by any other language
- Since there will never be new releases of NULL, all programs are upwardly
and downwardly compatible.
- NULL can be parsed top-down, bottom-up, left-right, right-left, inside-out,
- NULL programs are both self-documenting for clarity and self-concealing for
- NULL programmers are easy to find and once found can be fired since they
are not needed.
- If desired, specialized NULL hardware could be designed implementing the
code in firmware. Of course, such hardware may require years of development.
One suggestion from Bell's VLSI experts Nora and Andy Gates was to take an
existing available chip and remove all the instructions except NOP. While
this should work in theory, they acknowledged that it is probably not the
most efficient implementation.
These are just a few of the many ways NULL is superior to all current computer
languages. You can, no doubt, think of more. For further reading consult any of
the numerous books and articles by Donald Knuth, David Parnas, and of course,
the basis of all modern computer language theory, "The Emperor's New Clothes."
By John R. Andrews, University of Illinois at Chicago.