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Fortress is a programming language developed by Sun Microsystems as a high-performance programming platform, although it can also be used as a general programming language.Fortress was funded by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency's (DARPA) High Productivity Computing Systems (HPCS). It is generally used for math, science and engineering calculations that require a lot of processing power.
The HPCS project funded the development of three programming languages, including Fortress. In 2006, Sun’s Fortress was excluded from the project, making its future unpredictable. In 2007, Sun developed a different funding policy, where Fortress became an open-source project supported by community efforts. In March 2008, Fortress version 1.0 was released and was highly compatible with Java’s virtual machine environment.
The syntax in Fortress is suited for mathematical notation, much like FORTRAN, which was created by IBM in the 1950s for engineers, scientists and mathematicians. Fortress is a secure form of FORTRAN that includes some improvements, such as parallelism, Unicode support and concrete syntax. As such, Fortress is well suited to solving sets of equations and other complex mathematical operations. However, because it requires a large amount of RAM to run, its use is mostly limited to supercomputers and use in academic research institutions.