Pronounced pass-kal. A high-level programming language developed by Niklaus Wirth in the late 1960s. The language is named after Blaise Pascal, a seventeenth-century French mathematician who constructed one of the first mechanical adding machines.
Pascal is best known for its affinity to structured programming techniques. The nature of the language forces programmers to design programs methodically and carefully. For this reason, it is a popular teaching language.
Despite its success in academia, Pascal has had only modest success in the business world. Part of the resistance to Pascal by professional programmers stems from its inflexibility and lack of tools for developing large applications.
To address some of these criticisms, Wirth designed a new language called Modula-2. Modula-2 is similar to Pascal in many respects, but it contains additional features.