Short for Formula Translation, Fortran was one of the first programming languages. Development of FORTRAN began in 1954 by John Backus and members of the IBM team, and was first introduced to the public on October 15, 1956. It was a very popular programming language and is still used today.
Below is a brief history of FORTRAN.
FORTRAN - 1954
FORTRAN II - 1958
FORTRAN III - 1958 (Never released to public)
FORTRAN IV - 1961
FORTRAN 66 - 1972
FORTRAN 77 - 1980
Fortran 90 - 1991
Fortran 95 - 1997
Fortran 2003 - Published as ISO/IEC in 2004
Fortran 2008 - Published as ISO/IEC in September 2010
Fortran 2018 - Formerly known as Fortran 2015, Fortran 2018 is still in development.
Should I use "Fortran" or "FORTRAN" in my writing?
According to the Microsoft Manual of Style you should not use all uppercase "FORTRAN" and it should never be spelled out as "Formula Translation." If you're writing about versions of FORTRAN before Fortran 90, use FORTRAN in your writing. However, if you're writing about Fortran in general or writing about more recent versions of Fortran do not uppercase the word.