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Case 14

Hello, World

On their first day in the temple, the Java master posed the following three questions to the novices:

“Oftimes, when we acquire a new language or library, the first program we write is Hello, World. Its purpose is to inscribe these words in some fashion that will demonstrate the expected behavior of the technology. After this is done, the program is never run again.

“Now: why does it say hello, and not also goodbye?

“And: why say hello to the world, when the audience is but a single soul who will discard it after its first cry is uttered?

“And: why should it utter a greeting, which will never be answered in kind?”

- - -

Speak me a word which means hello and goodbye
is it not the first cry of an infant?

Find me a pinnacle from which the world may be seen—
in whose eye, then, is reflected every tiger,
and the desert of endless sand?

Topics...  philosophy