Automatically Programmed Tool (APT)

programming2The Automatically Programmed Tool (APT) programming language was invented at MIT’s legendary Servomechanisms Lab by Douglas T. Ross. The high level code was used to generate instructions for machine tools used in manufacturing.

APT is used to calculate a path that a tool must follow to generate a desired form, and it sparked a revolution in computer assisted manufacturing.

Created before FORTRAN and graphical interfaces, it also resulted in the first ANSI standard. It was used from 1959 to well into the 1970s. The language is now in the public domain, but there were many derivatives created over the years to run on minicomputers and beyond. It was so revolutionary to the industry it was crafted for, there are still elements of it being used in modern CAD/CAM design.

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