Small languages (was Re: Lua, Lunatic and Python

Charles Steinkuehler charles at
Thu Dec 18 16:52:36 CET 2003

Paul Rubin wrote:
> Charles Steinkuehler <charles at> writes:
>> Which is why I think that a small Forth kernel talking directly to the
>> linux kernel is the best solution.
> Forth is such a contorted language though, it's best to avoid it
> unless you're desperate.

Forth as a language is not at all contorted.  Programming in Forth is 
essentially creating a custom language to solve the problem at hand, so 
Forth is simply reflecting the structure (or lack thereof) of the mind 
of the programmer solving the problem.

Forth code can be as elegent or as twisted as you desire to make it.  In 
this regard, Forth is far more unrestricted than even C, allowing just 
about any form of nonsensical code.  While I generally like highly 
structured languages with strong typechecking and other features to keep 
the programmer out of trouble (ada, pascal, etc), the small size and 
potent abilities of Forth make it highly suitable for specific problem 
domains, especially if there are any resource constraints to deal with.

Charles Steinkuehler
charles at

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