There were proposals for a universal language by the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) and also by the Gesellschaft für Angewandte Mathematik und Mechanik. It was decided to organize a joint meeting to combine them. The meeting took place from May 27 to June 1, 1958, in Zürich and was attended by the following people:

The language was originally proposed to be called IAL (International Algebraic Language) but according to Perlis[1] this was rejected as an "'unspeakable' and pompous acronym". ALGOL was suggested instead, though not officially adopted until a year later. The publication following the meeting still used the name IAL[2]. Unresolved disagreements also led to a plan to define two dialects, ALGOL 58 and ALGOL 60 but the name ALGOL 60 was eventually used for a specific language [3]

  1. Perlis, A.J. | "Talk on Computing in the fifties" | ACM National Conference. Nashville,. TN | 1981 | (Transcript in J. A. N. Lee (ed.), Computer Pioneers, IEEE Computer Society Press, Los Alamito, CA, 1995, 545-556)
  2. Perlis, A.J. | Samelson, K. | "Preliminary report: international algebraic language" | Communications of the ACM | v. 1 | iss. 12 | p 8–22 | 1958 | doi 10.1145/368685.368689
  3. "Revised report on the Algorithmic Language ALGOL 60" | Naur, P | International Federation for Information Processing | 1962

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