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ALGOL (algorithmic language)
algebraic computer programming language used in mathematical and scientific applications
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ALGOL (short for ALGOrithmic Language) is a family of imperative computer programming languages originally developed in the mid 1950s which greatly influenced many other languages and was the standard method for algorithm description used by the ACM, in textbooks, and academic works for the next 30 years and more. In the sense that most modern languages are "algol-like", it was arguably the most successful of the four high level programming languages with which it was roughly contemporary, Fortran, Lisp, and COBOL. It was designed to avoid some of the perceived problems with FORTRAN and eventually gave rise to many other programming languages, including BCPL, B, Pascal, Simula, and C. ALGOL introduced code blocks and the
endpairs for delimiting them and it was also the first language implementing nested function definitions with lexical scope. Moreover, it was the first programming language which gave serious attention to formal language definition and through the Algol 60 Report introduced Backus-Naur Form, a principal notation for language design.
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Algol (ß Per, Beta Persei), known colloquially as the Demon Star, is a bright star in the constellation Perseus. It is one of the best known eclipsing binaries, the first such star to be discovered, and also one of the first (non-nova) variable stars to be discovered. Algol is actually a three-star system (Beta Persei A, B, and C) in which the large and bright primary Beta Persei A is regularly eclipsed by the dimmer Beta Persei B. Thus, Algol's magnitude is usually near-constant at 2.1, but regularly dips to 3.4 every two days, 20 hours and 49 minutes during the roughly 10-hour long partial eclipses. There is also a secondary eclipse when the brighter star occults the fainter secondary. This secondary eclipse can only be detected photoelectrically. Algol gives its name to its class of eclipsing variable, known as Algol variables.
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1. ALGOrithmic Language; a programming language used to express computer programs as algorithms
(hypernym) algebraic language
1. second brightest star in Perseus; first known eclipsing binary
(hypernym) binary star, binary, double star
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algol (algorithmic language)
algol, algebraic computer programming language used in mathematical and scientific applications
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n. algol, a double eclipsing variable star in the constellation Perseus; an algebraic computer language for solving mathematical and scientific problems using algorithms
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