Artificial languages for instructing computers to do steps of computation in order to complete tasks. They allow programmers to communicate with computers.

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18
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5answers
3k views

When does it make sense to compile my own language to C code first?

When designing an own programming language, when does it make sense to write a converter that takes the source code and converts it to C or C++ code so that I can use an existing compiler like gcc to ...
1
vote
1answer
315 views

Which programming language first came up with the finally block?

Which programming language first came up with the finally block? I ask purely out of curiosity. It is a very useful piece of syntactic sugar, and whoever first created it surely has a very ...
20
votes
5answers
3k views

Why is type inference useful?

I read code way more often than I write code, and I'm assuming that most of the programmers working on industrial software do this. The advantage of type inference I assume is less verbosity and less ...
2
votes
1answer
348 views

Do compilers un-inline recurrent expressions?

Does a compiler look for recurrent expressions to convert it into 'function' to reduce binary size and improve performance? Of course, the obvious answer might be "some do it, some don't", so I ask ...
2
votes
2answers
591 views

What is the difference between if('' == $variable) and if($variable == '') [duplicate]

While using an 'if' statement to check whether a variable is an empty string or not we can write it in two ways i.e. if('' == $variable) and if($variable == ''). I want to know what is the impact of ...
1
vote
1answer
825 views

Static typing vs. dynamic typing [closed]

I'm developing my own programming language in my spare time as a hobby. It's an interpreted language. Currently the syntax for variables is this: %<variable> = <value> Here are some ...
0
votes
1answer
202 views

What are factors to take into consideration in choosing a programming language/paradigm for a rule-based natural-language translation program?

I have experience with object-oriented programming languages (C++ and Java), but I am wondering what kinds of programming languages — including OOP languages– or programming paradigms might be ...
0
votes
2answers
181 views

Finding metrics for development time in different languages [closed]

I'm trying to determine if a language I'm investigating (Groovy) is better for developing enterprise applications than our current language (Java). Specifically I'm trying to figure out if it will ...
3
votes
2answers
273 views

What is the extent of programming language localization dialects?

Apple's scripting language AppleScript was designed with localization in mind; allowing the language to be represented in multiple dialects resembling languages from around the world. In this way, ...
3
votes
3answers
7k views

Find all possible subarrays of an Array

I am lost I just can't seem to get my head around backtracking/recursion approaches. I understand how simple recursion problems like factorials work I can even trace those by hand. But when it comes ...
1
vote
3answers
247 views

How to abide the “allocate in caller” rule when the size is computed in the callee?

Let's say we have an opaque type handle_t that is managed through a simple interface with functions such as: handle_t *handle_init(void); int handle_do(handle_t *); void handle_free(handle_t *); ...
7
votes
2answers
752 views

In layman's terms, what is left recursion?

According to one page on code.google.com, "left recursion" is defined as follows: Left recursion just refers to any recursive nonterminal that, when it produces a sentential form containing ...
2
votes
2answers
210 views

What properties does an object oriented language have? [closed]

I'm currently working on a game and wanted to add some scripting support. Due to trying to keep the entire codebase in managed c# (Excluding Monogame), I am using a custom language for the scripting ...
2
votes
4answers
576 views

Why aren't we building and using parallel processors *meant* for general computation?

We all know GPUs are much faster than CPUs for a wide range of applications. When someone asks why we are not just programming for GPUs at all, one of the most common answers is that GPUs are not good ...
3
votes
7answers
222 views

What if any languages treat undisposed resources as an error? [closed]

I've seen lots of code like the following example. It's in Python, but the same mistake is made in all languages with managed resources: f = open('foo.txt', 'rb') for line in f: print line That's ...
25
votes
6answers
2k views

What specifically does expressive power refer to?

Expressive Power is defined by Wikipedia as: .. the breadth of ideas that can be represented and communicated in that language. Does "ideas" refer to the things (operations, structures, ...
1
vote
3answers
388 views

From a technical point of view, could JavaScript be compiled instead of interpreted?

The question title speaks for itself. I'm specifically thinking in terms of a Node.js server. Additionally, this question is assuming that you don't need eval(). Also, if this is not possible, why ...
5
votes
4answers
2k views

How does Python compile some its code in C?

I read that some constructs of Python are more efficient because they are compiled in C. https://wiki.python.org/moin/PythonSpeed/PerformanceTips Some of the examples used were map() and filter(). I ...
2
votes
5answers
290 views

Do first-class methods exist?

Okay, I know first-class functions are cool, closures even better, etc. But is there any language with first-class methods? In my mind, I see a first-class method as an "object" that has both a ...
1
vote
2answers
181 views

If there's no problem treating a statement as an expression, why was there a distinction in the first place in some programming languages? [duplicate]

Why do we have the distinction between statements and expressions in most programming languages? For example, in Java, assuming f and g return ints, this still won't compile because it's a statement ...
1
vote
4answers
222 views

What would you call the concept of CofeeScript or Sass to be? [duplicate]

There is this rising trend with web development of making new pseudo languages to extend the functionality of JavaScript, CSS and HTML given that those are static and their metamorphosis or evolution ...
37
votes
5answers
4k views

What does “context-free” mean in the term “context-free grammar”?

Given the amount of material that tries to explain what a context-free grammar (CFG) is, I found it surprising that very few (in my sample, less than 1 in 20) give an explanation on why such grammars ...
1
vote
2answers
222 views

How do you guard against hidden overflows

consider the following: (i+j)/2 i and j are both 32 bit integers and the result should also be. But in the little equation, there's a hidden overflow, i+j could become larger then a 32 bit integer ...
1
vote
3answers
93 views

Property-level value transformation for indirect object casting

Does any programming language exist to support the explicit, property-level object copy? For example, assume this code: public class Student { public string Name { get; set; } public ...
1
vote
1answer
255 views

Hardware-control on one computer. But how about several?

For a while I have been pondering the question of, given a standard interface specification, whether there is a way to allow multiple programs to control multiple hardware devices across the network. ...
-3
votes
1answer
384 views

Why is the JavaScript-language different in different programs/sites? [closed]

I'm kind of new to programming and i have a question that's been bothering me for awhile. Why is the JavaScript-language different in different programs/sites. I've used Codecademy to practice and ...
4
votes
1answer
194 views

How should I recursively process a file in Haskell?

Basically I'm expanding a literate program in Haskell. There are two things I need to look for to expand. Here's an example file: program.c.lit: ============== Some comments in the source file that I ...
5
votes
4answers
380 views

Which language introduced the idea of private (hidden) variables? [duplicate]

I know C++ had private variables inside classes, and Java, C#, Javascript, and others picked up on that and ran with it. Aside from variable scope, most languages before that just made everything ...
2
votes
1answer
141 views

what is a language specification?

Either I am being a total n00b or just not with it today but I have been reading a few blogs lately and they talk about language specs. What actually is a language spec? Is php.net a language spec? ...
5
votes
3answers
637 views

Declaring variables in Python and PHP

The question is how to cope with absence of variable declaration in Python, PHP, and the like. In most languages there is a way to let the compiler know whether I introduce a new variable or refer to ...
11
votes
10answers
4k views

Can a closed-source programming language survive? [closed]

A friend has written a programming language. It has a syntax reminiscent of SGML. He has written an interpreter for it, and an IDE. He and his colleagues use it in-house as a server-side language. It ...
4
votes
5answers
1k views

Does this kind of programming language exist?

I'm thinking about creating my own pet programming language, and I have been wondering if similar language already exists. The basic idea is that the language itself would be dynamically typed with ...
7
votes
7answers
2k views

Why isn't there a next operation on enums?

In most popular programming languages like Java and C# there is a way to define enums, which are essentially datatypes with a fixed set of values, e.g. DayOfWeek. The problem is, given a value, e.g. ...
30
votes
5answers
3k views

Why do some functional programming languages use a space for function application?

Having looked at some languages for functional programming, I always wondered why some fp-languages use one or more whitespace characters for function application (and definition), whereas most (all?) ...
1
vote
2answers
514 views

Can a version of Python's shelve module that knows when its entries have been modified be written in any programming language?

shelve is a Python module that makes it easy to persist a Python dictionary to disk (under the right conditions). The documentation for shelve gives this example to demonstrate one of the pitfalls of ...
32
votes
6answers
3k views

Why isn't testing a language a supported feature at the syntax level?

You can find an endless list of blogs, articles and websites promoting the benefits of unit testing your source code. It's almost guaranteed that the developers who programmed the compilers for Java, ...
5
votes
1answer
395 views

How do programming languages integrate with OS runtimes

For example, Objective-C, Swift and Ruby (i.e. RubyMotion) integrate with the Cocoa framework. Is this done via linked libraries? I assume they call functions in existing binaries instead of simply ...
0
votes
3answers
168 views

is there any language that supports automatic evaluation of input expressions?

I'm wondering if anyone knows of a language that supports automatic-evaluation. (not sure this is the right term. so let me describe what I mean below) For example, a program asks for an int as its ...
0
votes
2answers
200 views

Is PHP the only popular language that mixes simple and associative arrays into a single type? [closed]

I'm doing a research on PHP and wondering if there any other commonly used programming langues that use an associative array for both simple indexed element storage and key-value functionality. Does ...
1
vote
2answers
324 views

is JS a gradually typed language?

I was researching on statically typed and dynamically typed concepts and found out there is another type system called gradually typed. From wikipedia Gradual typing is a type system in which ...
-1
votes
1answer
188 views

All programming functions always return to the If or If/Else statement? [closed]

After learning, coding, and coding even more than ever now, I have noticed a trend in a lot of programming which I do. The trend is that the majority of my functions are if{} or if{} else{} statements ...
11
votes
5answers
1k views

Is it beneficial to study past the basics of a core language when the primary goal is to rely on its framework? [closed]

Please keep in mind this is not another 'How much [insert programming language here] should I know before moving onto [insert framework here]?' What I'd like to know is how beneficial is it to learn ...
0
votes
3answers
488 views

How to get an image or rectangle to detect collision with another image

Can someone please explain to me how to detect collision with another image? The tutorial I was watching explained how to detect if a collision occurs between two rectangles but I would like to use ...
0
votes
1answer
1k views

Why are most functional programming languages also interpreted languages? [closed]

Functional/non-functional and interpreted/compiled are two different categorizations, yet it seems that there are a lot of overlaps in the programming languages that fall under those categories. Is ...
2
votes
1answer
250 views

High-level description of how experimental C++ features are developed?

Herb Sutter in a video answers a question about the concepts proposal considered for C++11 and from his remarks it sounds like multiple groups offered prototype implementations but all of them left ...
5
votes
1answer
783 views

Is there an imperative language with a Haskell-like type system? [closed]

I've tried to learn Haskell a few times over the last few years, and, maybe because I know mainly scripting languages, the functional-ness of it has always bothered me (monads seem like a huge mess ...
1
vote
1answer
145 views

How do references work in R?

I'm finding R confusing because it has such a different notion of reference than I am used to in languages like C, Java, Javascript... Ruby, Python, C++, well, pretty much any language I have ever ...
1
vote
1answer
386 views

Object-Oriented equivalent of LISP's progn function?

I'm currently writing a LISP parser that iterates through some AutoLISP code and does its best to make it a little easier to read (changing prefix notation to infix notation, changing setq assignments ...
-1
votes
1answer
117 views

How to make a non-english clone of CoffeeScript? [closed]

I want to make a non-english programming language that is identical to what CoffeeScript is to JavaScript. What I mean is that I don't want to build my own design or syntax. Just want to have a ...
3
votes
5answers
671 views

Should sanity be a property of a programmer or a program? [closed]

I design and implement languages, that can range from object notations to markup languages. In many cases I have considered restrictions in favor of sanity (common knowledge), like in the case of ...