Re: A Plain English Compiler

Scott Wyatt <>
24 Feb 2006 18:00:30 -0500

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From: Scott Wyatt <>
Newsgroups: comp.compilers
Date: 24 Feb 2006 18:00:30 -0500
Organization: Compilers Central
References: 06-02-122
Keywords: design, comment
Posted-Date: 24 Feb 2006 18:00:29 EST

Languages like AppleScript / Xtalk (sp?) found in Runtime Revolution,
SuperCard (HyperCard), and throughout the Mac world are a complete pain
when you try to figure out what some routines will do.

The problem with "English" is meaning. The "Definitive Guide to
AppleScript" begins with a discussion of just how confusing English can
be as a programming language.

Sure, I want an "easy to read" programming language, but that doesn't
mean it should be like English. English is often mangled -- I admit as a
college English teacher.

A computer language should never be ambiguous. English thrives on its
ambiguity. Sorry, but programming needs rules and limits.

- Scott
[My understanding was that the hope for Cobol was not that it would be
any easier to write than other languages, but that it would be easier
for non-experts to read. One can debate how well they met that
goal. -John]

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