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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75
votes
3answers
28k views

Why do programming languages, especially C, use curly braces and not square ones?

The definition of "C-Style language" can practically be simplified down to "uses curly braces ({})." Why do we use that particular character (and why not something more reasonable, like [], which ...
25
votes
8answers
14k views

Why do large websites use different languages for the backend and frontend?

My understanding from small MVC applications is that you have the front end, which deals with HTML, JS, jQuery, etc, and you have the back end, which consists of your controllers and models. ...
-1
votes
4answers
687 views

Is is acceptable to create mediocre code now in preparation for new language features? [closed]

I'll be specific: Java 8 is promised to bring lambda expressions as well as method and constructor references among other things. As a Java developer I'm super psyched about that. In my day to day ...
5
votes
4answers
816 views

Is it possible to create a 2d game for both linux and windows with next to no changes?

I'm starting a project with friends which would preferably reach both audiences of windows and linux. The only problem is that none of us have any experience of linux porting or linux coding any way. ...
2
votes
8answers
3k views

How does if/else work internally in all programming languages?

if(true/false){ //if condition is true }else { // if condition is false } Everyone knows about the structure of if-else. But what is if actually? Is it a class method, static method or ...
4
votes
5answers
569 views

What's the effect of this assignment (whatever the language)?

I think my book (Programming Languages: Principles and Paradigms) is wrong. a is a vector, assume a C-like language: b = 0; a[f(3)] = a[f(3)] + 1; int f(int n) { if(b == 0) { b = 1; ...
8
votes
1answer
422 views

Why is the main memory for object allocation called the 'heap'?

Has anybody got an idea why the area of main memory where objects are allocated is referred to as the heap. I can understand the rationale for that of the stack LIFO but would like to know what the ...
1
vote
1answer
192 views

A new language's chances [duplicate]

I am creating a new language, with some nice features like OOP, static typing, imperative, etc. The main reason for making a language was to learn more about compiler construction. My question is, ...
0
votes
3answers
284 views

C/C++ in applications that do not concern performance [closed]

C is the best language (or maybe the single language) suitable for operating systems, drivers, embedded systems etc. For more complex domains like computer graphics C++ is a better choice. But these ...
36
votes
3answers
3k views

Why are actual parameters called “arguments”?

Where does the word "argument" (in the programming sense) come from? i.e. Why are actual parameters called "arguments"? The meanings don't seem related, and I haven't found any explanation of it ...
-1
votes
2answers
300 views

What to learn and how? [closed]

I am a Java (Web) Developer. Having knowledge about c#, PHP and Ruby. I am getting confused how to keep myself updated with very fast changing the programming language and their implementation. Like, ...
-1
votes
3answers
467 views

How can I get assembly from an EXE? [closed]

Pretty much my only question is the title. Other then that I want to see the code behind small EXEs but I know it's hard to get it to convert to something like c or c++ so why not get assembly.
7
votes
2answers
461 views

What's a good math textbook to have on my desk while studying Haskell? [closed]

I just started learning Haskell and it seems like you can't get too far in the language without being comfortable ( or at least exposed ) to certain branches of mathematics. Unfortunately I have major ...
8
votes
1answer
462 views

Math library methods in Google's Go Programming Language

I have been programming in google Golang and have been enjoying it due to its brevity but I find it surprising that almost all its Math standard library methods are for the floating point type. Is ...
1
vote
2answers
276 views

Need some advice and feedback on my code's design

I am looking for feedback on the design of my program. I have a shell script call function.sh that defines a lot of helper functions. My intent is to use those bash functions defined in functions.sh ...
13
votes
4answers
354 views

Fernando J. Corbató's “Constrained languages”

For his 1990 Turing award speech, Fernando J. Corbató listed reasons why complex systems will inevitably fail. In his conclusion, he gives some suggestions for decreasing the probability of failure. ...
2
votes
2answers
334 views

How to fix bad fundamentals? [closed]

I am a native PHP developer, and have been for about a year or so. I love PHP and it was very easy for me to learn, but I have developed some bad habits along the way due to never having a formal ...
29
votes
2answers
2k views

Why is a Boolean value stored as a byte inside of a computer when it only requires one bit

I recently started learning to write code, and in my book I came across this question. "Why is a Boolean value stored as a byte inside of a computer when it only requires one bit?" can someone shed ...
5
votes
8answers
5k views

The most human language like programming language [closed]

There are so many articles on what the best coding languages are, such as C, C++ Go Haskel lisp java ML F# etc etc. Rarely do I see an article on the most syntactically human like programming ...
24
votes
4answers
6k views

Why does Java not do type inference?

I have always wondered why Java does not do type inference given that the language is what it is, and its VM is very mature. Google's Go is an example of a language with excellent type inference and ...
3
votes
1answer
119 views

Documentation Generation - FiM++

This is a question I originally asked on Stack Overflow, but as a conceptual design question as opposed to a technical issue, I believe it may be more appropriate, or possibly have alternate parallel ...
2
votes
1answer
4k views

Programming languages classification / taxonomy

Is there a rigorous way to classify programming languages ? If so, can the various "dimensions" be quantified ? (degree of purity) For instance, I just went on the Shade language website (I am not ...
0
votes
3answers
4k views

How to become an expert in C++ [closed]

I have some experience in Java programming and enterprise application development. I have done OOP, data structures in C++ for my undergraduate studies. But I couldn't touch C++ for years. Now I am ...
5
votes
2answers
863 views

Asking people to disable Java for security - what's next for developer?

I don't know what best to give as title to this so pardon me if it sounds weird. I saw this question asked on IT Security and another site asking people to disable Java from their system or browser ...
7
votes
1answer
504 views

Why is the cyclomatic complexity equal to two for a simple Hello World?

I would have two questions related to cyclomatic complexity: Can I use this metric for a whole app? I guess I cannot, as it would be incredibly large number, considering functions calling functions ...
33
votes
8answers
4k views

Are exceptions an OOP concept?

Having read a post yesterday, I realized I did not know much about the origin of exceptions. Is it an OOP related concept only? I tend to think it is, but again there are database exceptions.
9
votes
8answers
698 views

Past If statements Arrays, loops… Now what?

I gave up on programming a little over a year ago when I kept hitting this wall. I am revisiting the subject because I want to create basic Android application. But I feel that my limited knowledge ...
8
votes
3answers
389 views

Would it be better to have extra checks, or would it be a waste of time?

In your opinion, do you think it is a waste of time to make checks that you know there is no possible way of it being there/not being there, or would you just put it there just in case there is a bug ...
1
vote
3answers
2k views

How did Python become popular as a scripting language? [closed]

I looked at it in my field of work, which is film and pretty much every software we use comes with python as a scripting language: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Python_software That made me ...
87
votes
16answers
25k views

Why aren't user-defined operators more common?

One feature I miss in from functional languages is the idea that operators are just functions, so adding a custom operator is often as simple as adding a function. Many procedural languages allow ...
21
votes
4answers
2k views

I've been told HTML is a markup language, C++ is a programming language, what could make that difference?

My programming friends are always telling me that HTML is a markup language and C++ is a programming language. When I ask them what's the difference, they never give me a reasonable answer. What ...
0
votes
3answers
776 views

What is the reason behind methods with return values and methods with void?

I want to uderstand why there is a method in C# that could reurn a value, for example: public int Accelerate() { Speed++; return Speed; } and a method that does not reurn a value (void)? ...
22
votes
9answers
3k views

Are there any programming languages that follow a minimalist development approach?

I find it that when languages are considered the same as commercial software, there is always a constant need to add new features to justify new releases. Can there be or are there languages where ...
0
votes
1answer
168 views

Did “Viaweb” work in the browser without JavaScript and somehow use only Lisp?

I just read Beating the Averages, and Mr. Graham writes that they had a significant advantage over competitors because they used Lisp. From what I understand, Viaweb was a WYSIWYG editor that ran in ...
3
votes
3answers
444 views

Language for Chess Position Evaluation (experimental) [closed]

My aim is to, via pattern analysis and statistics, (as well as piece mobility and position) build a chess position evaluation analyzer (rather than simply going brute force ply-searching). Id like ...
5
votes
4answers
448 views

How do you migrate from one language to another? [closed]

I know that language is just a tool and it's all about creating product. But if you are all about enterprise and than you change to mobile development - how do you manage it? If I am used to PHP and ...
5
votes
2answers
7k views

How to execute a Ruby file in Java, capable of calling functions from the Java program and receiving primitive-type results?

I do not fully understand what am I asking (lol!), well, in the sense of if it is even possible, that is. If it isn't, sorry. Suppose I have a Java program. It has a Main and a JavaCalculator class. ...
13
votes
2answers
1k views

Advantages and disadvantages of structuring all code via classes and compiling to classes (like Java)

Edit: my language allows for multiple inheritance, unlike Java. I've started designing and developing my own programming language for educational, recreational, and potentially useful purposes. At ...
7
votes
4answers
622 views

Could a programming language work as well without statements?

As programming in JavaScript, I've noticed everything that can be done with statements and blocks can be done with expressions alone. Can a programming language work fine with only expressions? And, ...
1
vote
2answers
702 views

How do I add restrictions for users to sign up before they can access web site?

How do I get my webpage not to go back when they hit the back button and are logged out ? how can I add a web page to be blocked like FACEBOOK doesn't let you get into their site with out having a ...
1
vote
4answers
666 views

What are some non-MS languages that can write xlsx (Excel 2007+) documents efficiently? [closed]

Unfortunately, Excel format is required for the project I am working on. I have no problems getting the data I need in objects and arrays, and currently PHPExcel is doing handling the document ...
6
votes
1answer
279 views

Is there a well grounded theory on backward and forward compatibility of formats, languages, grammars and vocabularies?

I have a friend who has the specific problem of building a case against the use of a custom HTML <wrapper> tag in some site's markup. Now, intuitively we can answer that use of such a tag is ...
0
votes
3answers
501 views

Which language is more suitable heavy file tasks?

I need to write a script (based on basic functions) to process /image/audio/video files. The process is mainly filesystem tasks and converts. The database of files has been stored by mysql. The script ...
3
votes
5answers
464 views

Is this how dynamic language copes with dynamic requirement? [closed]

The question is in the title. I want to have my thinking verified by experienced people. You can add more or disregard my opinion, but give me a reason. Here is an example requirement: Suppose you ...
7
votes
4answers
5k views

Difference between Atomic Operation and Thread Safety?

From the discussion I've seen it seems that atomic operation and thread safety are the same thing, but a lot of people say that they're different. Can anyone tell me the difference if there is one?
6
votes
4answers
11k views

How do I improve my logic in general and programming in particular? [closed]

I'm good with understanding technology and implementing it. At least that is what I feel. But it seems that when I come across experienced programmers they point out that my logic is weak. I feel that ...
7
votes
4answers
1k views

What constitutes a programming language and how does one copyright a programming language?

I've decided to create a programming language of my own, mostly just for fun. However, I got interested in the legal aspect of it all. You can, for example, licence specific programs under specific ...
6
votes
3answers
373 views

What can be done against language inertia? [closed]

Often, projects use programming language X, but would use programming language Y if they were started from scratch. For example, big numerical models may be written entirely in Fortran. Whereas this ...
5
votes
1answer
478 views

Do there exist programming languages where a variable can truly know its own name?

In PHP and Python one can iterate over the local variables and, if there is only once choice where the value matches, you could say that you know what the variable's name is, but this does not always ...
3
votes
1answer
356 views

How is the DOM language independent?

Quoting from Wikipedia The Document Object Model (DOM) is a cross-platform and language-independent convention for representing and interacting with objects in HTML, XHTML and XML documents. and ...