I was an APL monkey at IBM for 9-ish months…^{[1]}

APL is a notation that is useful for mathematical thinking.

Mathematical notation (thinking) does not apply *everywhere*.

We (the royal we) *think* that multitasking is hard because we’re trying to do it in mathematical notation.

In fact, everyone already knows how to do multitasking.^{[2]}

The best (so far) notation for multitasking is a musical score. It denotes realtime, multiple parallel processes. OTOH, musical notation has the same problem as mathematical notation has — it was invented for 2D pen-and-paper, not 3D thinking.

Our problem is that we conflate “notation” with “programming”. We try to force-fit all of programming into one notation.

[1] I took down all of IBM Toronto (Canada?) writing a simple APL program (on a 5100). Turns out that there was a bug in IBM APL. OTOH, I was paid overtime to light up all of the front-panel lights on a 360 without trying.

[2] Think “cooking recipes”, “music"