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Although I don't know the origin, I think a reasonable interpretation of the contradicting statements would be that the documentation was IBM-proprietary, but was widely-available.
A few issues
"Closed PL/S meant that only IBM could modify and enhance the operating system."
This is certainly not true. It has always been possible to patch the OS with superzap and make modifications in assembler. Having a PL/S or PL/X compiler has never been required.
"As the market for computers and software shifted away from IBM mainframes and MVS, IBM recanted and has offered the current versions of PL/S to selected customers (ISVs through the Developer Partner program.)"
This had nothing to do with market factors. IBM decided to make PL/X available to select ISVs based on requests from ISVs for tools from IBM to increase productivity of OEM software development. The idea did not catch on, not much was done with PL/X by OEMs and IBM eventually pulled the plug. PL/X is again no longer available.184.108.40.206 (talk) 11:56, 21 October 2011 (UTC)
- As for patching the operating system, that only results in a patched operating system. You might consider that to be a modified and/or enhanced operating system but most would not. It is a matter of definition. As for market factors, read what was said. It does not say "due to market factors" or anything like that, it says it happened in parallel. As for the opposite (that it did not happen due to marketing) do you have something authoritive saying that? We don't know why IBM changed and allowed partial release of PL/S. This is not the place to speculate. Sam Tomato (talk) 01:22, 13 November 2016 (UTC)
Suggestion for historical perspective
Apparently BSL preceded C. Is there any other high-level language used to write operating systems that existed prior to both of them? Sam Tomato (talk) 01:26, 13 November 2016 (UTC) Probably ALGOL was the first high-level language used for developing operating systems. Sam Tomato (talk) 02:18, 13 November 2016 (UTC)
The link for John Ehrman on the bottom of the main page is linking to the wrong John Ehrman. The John Ehrman from IBM passed away in 2018 and his full name (from what I can find on the net) was John Robert Ehrman.
On this page you can find more info and also see a comment from sombody who worked with John at IBM.