Re: Compilation Quotient (CQ): A Metric for the Compilation Hardness of Programming Languages

Derek <>
Tue, 11 Jun 2024 00:28:18 +0100

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From: Derek <>
Newsgroups: comp.compilers
Date: Tue, 11 Jun 2024 00:28:18 +0100
Organization: Compilers Central
References: 24-06-003 24-06-005
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Keywords: parse, semantics, comment
Posted-Date: 11 Jun 2024 03:26:51 EDT
In-Reply-To: 24-06-005


> [I had two other thoughts. One was that you can tell C was written when
> parsing was still hard enough that you didn't want to bulk the parsers
> up with semantic stuff. The other was that in the languages where it is
> hard to write a valid problem, how much more likely is it that the program
> actually works once you get it to compile? -John]

C was created after Algol 68, whose 2-level grammar contained
syntax+semantics. Algol 68 programs automatically generated from the
language grammar should compile just fine. I suspect that output would
be rare, because generating the code needed to produce output would be
uncommon, and the path to it being the end result of a drunkards walk.

C had a kind-of conventional grammar, where-as Algol 68 grammar is
certainly not conventional (it might even be unique).
[I never heard of any other language using VW-grammars. In C's
defense, the early compilers -John]

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