JTC1/SC22/WG6 (no longer active) - Algol

last revised 6 April 1996

ISO/IEC JTC1/SC22/WG6 Algol was established in the 1970s by SC22's predecessor committee, ISO TC97/SC5, and was inherited by the new SC22 when it started work in 1985. Algol 60, along with Cobol, was one of the first programming languages for which a standardization project was undertaken by SC5 when it was founded in the early 1960s, and indeed had already been discussed by TC97 with IFIP, the International Federation for Information Processing, whose WG2.1 was responsible for the language.

An ISO Draft Recommendation (using the terminology of the time) was produced in 1967, but for a variety of technical and non-technical reasons Algol 60 did not achieve full status as an International Standard until 1984. (A Japanese national standard had been published in 1972, and a German national standard in 1972.) Agreement was reached somewhat earlier, however, on an ISO Technical Report on the hardware representation of Algol 60 basic symbols.

WG6 was also concerned with attempts to establish international standardization projects for the related languages Algol 68 and Simula 67. However, neither proposal achieved sufficient international support. (Simula became a Swedish national standard in 1987.) In consequence, WG6 was disbanded in 1987, following an SC22 letter ballot. Its final report appears in SC22 document N395.

At the five-year ISO review in 1989 SC22 resolved that the Algol 60 standard should be withdrawn, and the Technical Report on hardware representation, not included in that review, was withdrawn in 1991.

A history of the Algol 60 standardization project, including the attempts to establish projects for Algol 68 and Simula 67, can be found in:

Approved international specifications produced:

This page prepared by Brian Meek; last revised 6 April 1996