Since 2017 I have been helping Guy Steele organize the History of Programming Languages conference (HOPL IV), originally planned to be held in June 2020, colocated with PLDI in London. Here is its description:
The History of Programming Languages conference series produces accurate historical records and descriptions of programming language design, development, and philosophy. It is infrequently held: the first three were in 1978, 1993, and 2007.
The Call for Papers:
For HOPL-IV the Program Committee encourages submissions that discuss and analyze the historical development of individual programming languages, programming language families, language features, design themes, and other strong influences on the direction of programming language design, implementation, and usage. A HOPL-IV paper that is about a single specific language should detail the early history or evolution of that language and the motivation for creating that new language; ideas about the language should have been documented by 2009, and the language should have been widely used by 2011. A HOPL-IV paper that addresses a language or language family already described in a previous HOPL conference should provide substantial new detail about language evolution, development and standardization activities, new dialects and implementations, significant publications, applications, user groups, and other technical and social consequences. A HOPL-IV paper about a more general historical theme or trend should take a cross-language perspective to discuss and analyze some issue or design feature that has affected the historical development of programming language design, implementation, and usage over a span of at least twenty years.
The Program Committee will work closely with prospective authors to ensure that both the content and presentation of the papers are of high quality. There will be two rounds of careful reviewing. The first round will select the papers for the conference (conditional acceptance); the second round will polish the papers and ensure that they meet the requirements for technical accuracy, historical completeness, and clarity. The Program Chairs may also ask outside experts to provide additional reviews. For each selected paper, a member of the Program Committee will be assigned as a “shepherd” to ensure that intermediate drafts are carefully revised and written clearly, and that the recommendations of reviewers are addressed.
Nineteen papers were accepted for publication and presentation at the planned June 2020 HOPL conference. The conference was postponed due to COVID-19. Here is the list of accepted papers:
APL Since 1978
Roger K.W. Hui, Morten J. Kromberg
Thriving in a crowded and changing world: C++ 2006-2020
A History of Clojure
History of Coarrays and SPMD Parallelism in Fortran
John Reid, Bill Long, Jon Steidel
Origins of the D Programming Language
Walter Bright, Andrei Alexandrescu, Michael Parker
Evolution of Emacs Lisp
Stefan Monnier, Michael Sperber
The Early History of F#
A history of the Groovy programming language
Allen Wirfs-Brock, Brendan Eich
History of Logo
Cynthia Solomon, Brian Harvey, Ken Kahn, Henry Lieberman,
Mark L. Miller, Margaret Minsky, Artemis Papert, Brian Silverman
Hygienic Macro Technology
William D Clinger, Mitchell Wand
A History of MATLAB
Jack Little, Cleve Moler
The Origins of Objective-C at PPI/Stepstone and its Evolution at NeXT
Brad Cox, Steve Naroff, Hansen Hsu
A history of the Oz multiparadigm language
Peter Van Roy, Seif Haridi, Christian Schulte, Gert Smolka
S, R and Data Science.
The Evolution of Smalltalk from Smalltalk-72 through Squeak
The History of Standard ML
David MacQueen, Robert Harper, John Reppy
Verilog HDL and its ancestors and descendants
Peter Flake, Phil Moorby, Steve Golson, Arturo Salz, Simon Davidmann
The papers were published in Proceedings of the ACM on Programming Languages, Volume 4, Issue HOPL June 2020.
Here are some links: