What is M? - Definition from WhatIs.com
Part of the Programming glossary:

M is a programming language intended primarily for database applications in the biomedical field. The language has a long history. It was first conceived in 1966 as MUMPS (Massachusetts General Hospital Utility Multi-Programming System) in the animal lab at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. It became an ANSI (American National Standards Institute) standard programming language in 1977.

In 1990, the name was formally changed from MUMPS to M because the original name gave people the idea that the language has something specifically to do with the disease called the mumps. (Nevertheless, some people still call it MUMPS.) M forces a rigorous syntax on the programmer. For this reason, some programmers dislike M because they find it difficult to read and debug. The only data type is called a string, which is converted into or derived from numerical data such as dates and times, physical addresses, telephone numbers, or identification numbers.

M or MUMPS is not to be confused with MUMPs, a program that assists companies and academic researchers that have ideas for micro-electromechanical systems (MEMS) to manufacture prototypes.

This was last updated in May 2008
Posted by: Margaret Rouse

Related Terms

Definitions

  • hypervisor

    - A hypervisor is a function which abstracts -- isolates -- operating systems and applications from the underlying computer hardware. (SearchServerVirtualization.com)

  • data type

    - A data type, in programming, is a classification that specifies which type of value a variable has and what type of mathematical, relational or logical operations can be applied to it without causi... (SearchSOA.com)

  • Taco Bell programming

    - Taco Bell programming is an approach to software development that is based on the concept that most problems can be solved by reconfigurations of commonly-used Unix programs. (WhatIs.com)

Glossaries

  • Programming

    - Terms related to software programming, including definitions about programming languages and words and phrases about software design, coding, testing and debugging.

  • Internet applications

    - This WhatIs.com glossary contains terms related to Internet applications, including definitions about Software as a Service (SaaS) delivery models and words and phrases about web sites, e-commerce ...

Ask a Question. Find an Answer.Powered by ITKnowledgeExchange.com

Ask An IT Question

Get answers from your peers on your most technical challenges

Ask Question

Tech TalkComment

Share
Comments

    Results

    Contribute to the conversation

    All fields are required. Comments will appear at the bottom of the article.