It was an interactive, conversational language based on JOSS, developed by BBN after Cliff Shaw from RAND visited the labs in 1964 as part of the NIH survey. It was first implemented on the PDP-1 and was used to provide a commercial time sharing service by BBN in the Boston area and later by Time Sharing Ltd. in the United Kingdom.
In an interview in 1996 Leo Beranek says "We even developed a programming language called TELCOMP that to this day, some say was better than the programming language that the industry adopted, namely BASIC."
There were at least three versions: TELCOMP I, TELCOMP II and TELCOMP III.
TELCOMP programs were normally input via a paper tape reader on a Teletype (such as the ASR-33 Teletype) which would be connected to a PDP via a modem and acoustic telephone line. Data could be read from the paper tape reader or from the Teletype keyboard. Output was either printed to the Teletype or sent to the paper tape punch. Early versions had no facility for on-line storage of programs or data.
During data input using a Teletype, the user would type a response to a printed prompt. If, instead of hitting Return, the user hit Tab, another, possibly computed, prompt would be printed on the same line. This process could be repeated for the full width of the line. This unusual feature allowed very compact data entry, comparable to full-screen CRT data entry. It saved paper, and the input section of the form became part of the program's printed output.
A later derivative of TELCOMP called STRINGCOMP was oriented towards string handling. Another BBN JOSS-derivative called FILECOMP was developed for the GE MEDINET system, which was cancelled. The implicit file handling system it contained was influential on the MUMPS global database system.
DEMAND Read input from the teletype
DO PART Execute all of the steps in a numbered part
DO STEP Execute a single line
DONE Stop execution of current part and return to caller
IF Condition, suffixed to any instruction
FOR Loop, suffixed to any instruction
PLOT Type output to the teletype in the form of a graph
PRINT Print output to the teletype
READ Read input from the paper tape reader
SEND Send output to the paper tape punch
SET Assign a variable to the value of an expression
STOP Stop execution completely
TO PART Go to a specified part
TO STEP Go to a specified line
TYPE Emulate teletype input while in stored operation mode (like the TCL/TK Expect functionality)
; Comment, suffixed to any line
FORM A specification for formatted output (not really a command)
1.04 TYPE #,"ENTER ONE OF THE FOLLOWING:-";MENU
1.05 TYPE FORM X FOR X=1:1:4 FOR END=10^15
1.06 READ GRNO IN FORM 15
1.065 DONE IF GRNO=END
1.07 TO STEP 1.06 IF GRNO>4
1.08 TO PART GRNO+1
2.01 DO PART 50
2.02 READ N,K
2.03 DO PART 51
2.04 TO PART 15
15.01 LINE FOR X=1:1:3
15.02 TYPE MINPL,MAXPL IN FORM 17
15.03 TYPE FORM 17
15.04 DO PART GRNO+15 FOR X=MNPL:STPL:MXPL
ITEM NUMBER? #####
MINIMUM ##### MAXIMUM ######
The president of TelComp to join Brazilian regulator's advisory council.(Brazil)(Telecom Regulators' appointment)(Brief Article)
Aug 01, 2004; The president of the Brazilian Association of Competing Telecom Service Providers (TELCOMP), Luiz Cuza, was named to the...