Another scripting language implemented into Python itself?
jack at performancedrivers.com
Mon Jan 24 21:41:31 EST 2005
On Mon, Jan 24, 2005 at 09:17:24PM -0500, Roy Smith wrote:
> Rocco Moretti <roccomoretti at hotpop.com> wrote:
> > The OP doesn't mention his application, but there is something to be
> > said about domain specific scripting languages. A well designed
> > domain-specific scripting language(*) with the appropriate high level
> > constructs can make script writing simpler.
> This is a bit of a sore point with me.
> I've been involved with several projects where people felt the need to
> invent their own scripting languages. It usually starts with "we don't
> need the power of a full programming language, we only need to be able
> to do X, Y, and Z". So they write a little language which lets them do
> X, Y, and Z.
> Then they discover they need more complex data structures than they
> originally thought. And nested loops. And functions. And more
> sophisticated variable scoping rules. And a regex library. And 47
> other things. So they duct-tape all those into the system.
> A few years later, you end up with most of a real programming language,
> except with a whole bunch of warts.
> The syntax is usually quirky (the one I'm working with today does not
> allow any space before the open paren of a function call, but requires
> it before the opening paren of an "if" statement). It generally has
> poor error reporting. It doesn't have the whole family of free tools
> that grow up around any real language (editor customization packages,
> syntax checkers, debuggers, extensions, etc). You doesn't have a gaggle
> of tutorial books written about it that you can buy from your favorite
> on-line bookseller.
> Worse, when you need more brains/bodies on the project, you can't put an
> add on Hot Jobs for "experienced OurOwnScriptingLanguage programmer" and
> expect to get anybody who can be productive quickly.
> What it does have is a body of code dependent on it which is now so
> large that porting it to something else is an unthinkably large task.
> And it's got a small cadre of language gurus who spend all day defending
> the language with answers like, "But, it was never *intended* that
> people would do stuff like this with it".
I mean, did you used to work at CDNOW too?
I don't miss that want-to-gouge-out-your-own-eyes feeling.
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