A programming language is a formal computer language designed to communicate instructions to a machine, particularly a computer.

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A programming language is a formal computer language designed to communicate instructions to a machine, particularly a computer., formerly known as A programming language is a formal constructed language designed to communicate instructions to a machine, particularly a computer., formerly known as A programming language is an artificial language designed to communicate instructions to a machine, particularly a computer., was created by User:Rottytooth in early 2014.

Overview

The sentence "A programming language is a formal computer language designed to communicate instructions to a machine, particularly a computer." serves as the language, the program, and the output of that program as interpreted by that language. There is only one possible program, and that program is a quine. Inspired by the Fluxus event scores, it eliminates the distinction between code, the performance of that code, and the system that determines that performance. Generally speaking, programs are only written in Programming Language (as it's abbreviated) unintentionally.

Each time someone uses the first sentence of this Wikipedia article, they are unwittingly writing a successful program in Programming Language, one which reiterates the very definition they lifted, ignoring (symbolically deleting) any other content they've written that might attempt to provide context for its use. While Programming Language itself fits the definition of a programming language according to Wikipedia, it sits outside most peoples' commonsensical understanding of what a programming language is or how it behaves.

Previous Versions

If the first sentence of the English entry for Programming Language changes, the name of this language will also change to match, although adaptation may be slow. According to Google, there are about 5,400 programs written in its current version, and 12,800 in the previous ones, now invalidated.

NOTE: This is probably the worst, most convoluted name this language has had yet, with the additional use of the word "computer" making the final clause redundant. A better definition of programming language, IMO, would be something like "A formal language designed to express algorithms," leaving the machine (and the two computers) out of it.

Variations

There is no reason other programs, corresponding to the first sentences of other Wikipedia entries, could not also be code -- but technically each entry would belong to its own programming language, distinct from A programming language is a formal computer language designed to communicate instructions to a machine, particularly a computer.

Implementation

Here is a Python implementation by User:M654 (no longer current):

 import sys

 def parse(command):
     if command == "A programming language is a formal constructed language designed to communicate instructions to a machine, particularly a computer.":
         print("A programming language is a formal constructed language designed to communicate instructions to a machine, particularly a computer.")

 with open(sys.argv[1], 'r') as f:
     code = f.read()

 parse(code)

Source here