Over and over again as I’ve dredged through this stuff, I kept finding programming constructs, ideas and approaches we call part of “modern” programming if we attempt them at all, sitting abandoned in 45-year-old demo code for dead languages. And to be clear: that was always a choice. Over and over again tools meant to make it easier for humans to approach big problems are discarded in favor of tools that are easier to teach to computers, and that decision is described as an inevitability.
—The money shot in this really fascinating article on why we (usually) start counting arrays at 0 instead of 1 in programming languages, a story that also involves yacht racing. Recommended, even if you don’t program! (via ryannorth)