Hiring guide for BPL (Burroughs Procedural Language) Engineers

BPL (Burroughs Procedural Language) Developer Hiring Guide

BPL, or Burroughs Procedural Language, is a high-level programming language developed by the Burroughs Corporation in the 1960s. It was initially designed for their B5000 series of mainframe computers to manage system tasks and control job processing. This procedural language was unique as it allowed direct manipulation of the computer's stack and other hardware features. Its innovative design influenced many subsequent languages including ALGOL and Pascal. The information about BPL can be found in historical documents from Burroughs Corporation itself as well as various scholarly articles on early computing history.

Ask the right questions secure the right BPL (Burroughs Procedural Language) talent among an increasingly shrinking pool of talent.

First 20 minutes

General BPL (Burroughs Procedural Language) app knowledge and experience

The first 20 minutes of the interview should seek to understand the candidate's general background in BPL (Burroughs Procedural Language) application development, including their experience with various programming languages, databases, and their approach to designing scalable and maintainable systems.

How would you define BPL?
BPL, or Burroughs Procedural Language, is a high-level programming language that was developed by Burroughs Corporation for its line of mainframe computers. It is similar to ALGOL and is used for system programming.
What are the key features of BPL?
BPL is a block-structured language that supports recursion, dynamic memory allocation, and exception handling. It also supports both structured and unstructured programming constructs.
Describe the difference between BPL and other procedural languages.
Unlike other procedural languages, BPL is designed specifically for system programming. It has features like dynamic memory allocation and exception handling that are not commonly found in other procedural languages.
How would you handle exceptions in BPL?
BPL provides a TRY-CATCH construct for exception handling. When an exception occurs in the TRY block, control is transferred to the corresponding CATCH block where the exception can be handled.
What are the data types supported by BPL?
BPL supports several data types including integer, real, boolean, character, and string. It also supports arrays and records.
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What you’re looking for early on

Does the candidate have a solid understanding of BPL?
Has the candidate worked with MCP (Master Control Program) systems?
Can the candidate demonstrate problem-solving skills?
Does the candidate have experience with procedural programming?

Next 20 minutes

Specific BPL (Burroughs Procedural Language) development questions

The next 20 minutes of the interview should focus on the candidate's expertise with specific backend frameworks, their understanding of RESTful APIs, and their experience in handling data storage and retrieval efficiently.

How would you declare a variable in BPL?
Variables in BPL are declared using the VAR keyword followed by the variable name and its type. For example, 'VAR x INTEGER;' declares an integer variable named x.
Describe the difference between a procedure and a function in BPL.
In BPL, a procedure is a block of code that performs a specific task but does not return a value. A function, on the other hand, is similar to a procedure but it returns a value.
How would you implement recursion in BPL?
Recursion in BPL can be implemented by defining a procedure or a function that calls itself. The recursive call must be conditional to prevent infinite recursion.
What are the control structures available in BPL?
BPL provides several control structures including IF-THEN-ELSE, CASE, FOR, WHILE, and REPEAT. These structures can be used to control the flow of execution in a program.
How would you perform file I/O operations in BPL?
BPL provides built-in procedures for file I/O operations. For example, the OPEN procedure can be used to open a file, the READ procedure can be used to read from a file, and the WRITE procedure can be used to write to a file.
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The ideal back-end app developer

What you’re looking to see on the BPL (Burroughs Procedural Language) engineer at this point.

At this point, a skilled BPL (Burroughs Procedural Language) engineer should demonstrate strong problem-solving abilities, proficiency in BPL (Burroughs Procedural Language) programming language, and knowledge of software development methodologies. Red flags include lack of hands-on experience, inability to articulate complex concepts, or unfamiliarity with standard coding practices.

Digging deeper

Code questions

These will help you see the candidate's real-world development capabilities with BPL (Burroughs Procedural Language).

What does the following BPL code do?
This code defines a procedure named DIVIDE that takes two parameters, X and Y. If Y is zero, it calls an error procedure with the message 'Division by zero'. If Y is not zero, it returns the result of dividing X by Y.
What will be the output of the following BPL code?
The output of this code will be the numbers 1 through 5 printed on separate lines. The PRINTNUM procedure prints numbers from 1 to the number passed as the parameter N.
What does the following BPL code do?
This code defines a procedure named REVERSE that takes an array A as a parameter and reverses its elements. The SWAP procedure is used to exchange the elements at positions I and SIZE(A) - I + 1.
What does the following BPL code do?
This code defines a procedure named PARALLEL that takes two procedures P1 and P2 as parameters and executes them in parallel. The FORK procedure is used to create a new thread of execution.

Wrap-up questions

Final candidate for BPL (Burroughs Procedural Language) Developer role questions

The final few questions should evaluate the candidate's teamwork, communication, and problem-solving skills. Additionally, assess their knowledge of microservices architecture, serverless computing, and how they handle BPL (Burroughs Procedural Language) application deployments. Inquire about their experience in handling system failures and their approach to debugging and troubleshooting.

Describe the difference between dynamic and static memory allocation in BPL.
In BPL, dynamic memory allocation is done at runtime using the NEW procedure, and the memory can be deallocated using the DISPOSE procedure. Static memory allocation, on the other hand, is done at compile time.
How would you implement multithreading in BPL?
BPL does not natively support multithreading. However, it can be achieved through the use of external libraries or by interfacing with the underlying operating system.
What are the debugging tools available for BPL?
BPL provides a built-in debugger that can be used to step through the code, set breakpoints, and inspect variables. It also supports core dumps for post-mortem debugging.

BPL (Burroughs Procedural Language) application related

Product Perfect's BPL (Burroughs Procedural Language) development capabilities

Beyond hiring for your BPL (Burroughs Procedural Language) engineering team, you may be in the market for additional help. Product Perfect provides seasoned expertise in BPL (Burroughs Procedural Language) projects, and can engage in multiple capacities.