What Counts as a Programming Language

When we think of programming languages, we think of Java, Kotlin, JavaScript, or Python. We don't think of CSS, SQL, or HTML. And we don't think of Alloy, Modelica, or SNOBOL—in fact, maybe we haven't even heard of all those. But what's the distinction? And maybe most importantly, what can we learn as programmers from "not programming languages"?


The talk aims to show folks what we can learn from questioning how we categorize things rather than ignoring things outside our arbitrary categories. It also aims to help folks understand that most "universal truths" aren't as universal as we might be led to believe—and why it matters.


This talk should appeal to programmers of all stripes!