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On 8 Feb 2008, at 14:03, steve donovan wrote:

(g)awk is a lovely language. Look at those old books by Jon Bentley and
you'll see the oldtimers prototyping things in AWK. Was probably the
first scripting language, apart from BASIC and shell ;)

awk is also, apart from shell, the only real programming language that guaranteed to be installed on a POSIX machine. All the language compilers like c90 and f77 are optional.