📖Growing a Language

authors
Steele, Guy
year
1998
url
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_ahvzDzKdB0
  • Small programming languages are limited. Large programming languages are more useful, but are longer to produce, thus loosing market. (Related to The Rise of “Worse is Better.“)
  • The language should be neither small nor large, it should be extensible. It should allow the user to define their own abstractions that could look indistinguishable from the built-in language features. Language authors should then pick the best libraries and include them as part of the languages.

    • I think this is what Clojure is doing.
    • Forth is also extremely extensible. Unfortunately, language authors do not seem to accept additions to the language.
  • He talks about how Java could be made more extensible: generics, operator overloading, etc. It’s kind of funny to see these ideas expressed in 1998 and knowing that only generics got implemented.

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