Any docs on Visual programming languages ?

B Thomas <>
2 Oct 2004 01:22:36 -0400

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Any docs on Visual programming languages ? (B Thomas) (2004-10-02)
Re: Any docs on Visual programming languages ? (Paul Tarvydas) (2004-10-09)
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From: B Thomas <>
Newsgroups: comp.compilers
Date: 2 Oct 2004 01:22:36 -0400
Organization: Road Runner High Speed Online
Keywords: visual, question
Posted-Date: 02 Oct 2004 01:22:36 EDT

I am interested in how applications like simulink in Matlab
can translate visual descriptions of a dynamical system into
a set of differential algebraic equations. I am familiar
with lex/yacc and basic compiler theory to know how to
parse an equations written in plain text like say a matlab
script. But a two dimensional flow chart ?? One thing I
can think of is representing the diagram by some sought of
xml description as it is built by a the drawing program and
then parsing the xml description. However the devil seems
to be in the detail.

I was able to glean some ideas using google. Most pointed me
towards graph grammars and graph transformations. One notable
exception was articles by "James R Burns" on converting
forrester diagrams to differential equations. But diagrams
used by applications like simulink, vensim and many others
are vastly more complicated (I think).

I have very little knowledge about graph grammars/graph
transformations or visual programming languages. I would
be greatfull if you could give me a pointer or two on
where to start reading. Books, Papers, web links anything
would be great. Hopefully directed towards a newbie.

Also are then any open source toolkits/compiler compilers/parser
generators for visual programming languages/graph grammars.

B Thomas

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