Algol meaning

ălgŏl, -gôl
A double, eclipsing variable star in the constellation Perseus, almost as bright as Polaris.
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A computer language employing algebraic symbols, used internationally for scientific computations.
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(place, proper) A binary, variable star in the constellation Perseus: magnitude 2.09: the fainter star regularly eclipses its brighter companion.
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(ALGOrithmic Language) A high-level programming language that was developed as an international language for the expression of algorithms between people and between people and machines. ALGOL-60 (1960) was simple and widely used in Europe. ALGOL-68 (1968) was more complicated and scarcely used, but was the inspiration for Pascal. The following example changes Fahrenheit to Celsius. See Pascal. fahrenheit begin real fahr; print ("Enter Fahrenheit "); read (fahr); print ("Celsius is ",(fahr-32.0)*5.0/9.0); end finish.
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Origin of algol

  • Arabic (ra’s) al-ġūl (head) of the ghoul al- the ġūl ghoul (so called because the star was considered to represent the head of Medusa held by Perseus) ġwl in Semitic roots

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition