Novel Thoughts on Scripting and Languages

Mike Meyer mwm at
Wed Jan 8 05:16:42 CET 2003

judoscript at (James Huang) writes:

> > > Have you ever thought about scripting more areas, such
> > > as SQL, XML, EJB, SGML, HTTP, E-mail and GUI, the way you
> > > script OS commands, all at once? Think about it!
> > I have. I've written in it. It's called Rexx. Where JudoScript is as
> > much a multi-target scripting langauge as this article is novel, Rexx
> > is the real McCoy.
> Admittedly I'm no Rexx person.

In that case, you've missed the first true multitarget scripting
language, and it's only been around for 20 years now. I'd say you
failed to check on prior work properly.

> Please see the examples in other replies. Thanks.

I only saw two. One looked like a fancy shell script. The other looked
like a fancy sendmail script. I've never run into a sendmail that was
enabled for Rexx, so the point is sort of moot.

As others have mentioned, you can do this kind of thing with VBA. On
Unix, you can do it with CORBA. The real measure of the power of this
approach is how many applications will support what you're doing.

The magic of (A)Rexx was that adding a simple interface to any
application that supported a command line interface was trivial, and
instantly gave you the ability to script the application with a
full-blown programming language. Making the application a server and
allowing things to connect to it was harder, but so useful that many
applications did it.

For instance, you talk about scripting in SQL. How many databases does
it work with, and which ones? Of course, that's a bad example, because
if I have to write SQL, then I'm not scripting, I'm programming.

How hard is it to add judoscript support to a random application, and
how much overhead does it add? Do I have to embed a java vm in the
thing to use it? What advantage does it give me over doing a CORBA
interface - see <URL: > for a
bit on that - to make up for the loss of the ability to write scripts
in any language with CORBA support? On Windows, you get to do the same
comparison with ActiveX or whatever MS is calling their distributed
object technology this month.

Mike Meyer <mwm at>
Independent WWW/Perforce/FreeBSD/Unix consultant, email for more information.

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