Programming Languages definitions

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1

programming language

A formal language which comprises a set of instructions that produce various kinds of output. Consists of instruction for computers

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Program

instructions for a computer to execute

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high-level language

Language that allows you to write precise instructions in a human-readable form

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4

Program Design

Design of a language driven to fix a problem

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5

Program Philosophy/Paradigm

  • Imperative (Procedual)

  • Declarative (Functional)

  • Logical/Constrained-based (OOP)

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Computer Architecture

Language must be made to work how the hardware architecture works

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Language Implementation Technology:

Compilers, Interpreters, Virtual Machines

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Compiler:

Translates source code into executable machine code run directly by the hardware

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Interpreter:

Reads and executes each line of code as it reads it during run time.

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Virtual Machine

Executes a compiled intermediate level code, byte code, which is interpreted by the virtual machine

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Desirable design features of a language:

  • Simplicity

  • Orthogonality

  • Level of Abstraction

  • Portability

  • Cost *Expressiveness

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simplicity

Feature set is short and to the point

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Orthogonality:

Different factors combine to produce something meaningful

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level of abstraction:

The amount of complexity by which a system is viewed or programmed. Higher level, less detail. Lower level, more detail.

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Portability

Ability to move program from one system to another

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Expressivity

The amount of ways that the same problem can be solved.

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Memory Allocation

  • Static Allocation

  • Dynamic Allocation

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Static Allocation:

Memory is allocated at compilation time (predetermined) PROS: *Faster CONS: *Needs to know amount of memory in advance *Prone to memory waste

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Dynamic Allocation:

memory space is only allocated when required at runtime. PROS: *Do not need to know amount of memory in advance *Use only what is needed CONS: *Slower

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Memory Allocation Implementation:

  • Compiler: Static and Dynamic

  • Interpreter: Dynamic

  • Virtual Machine: Static and Dynamic

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21

Names:

User generated ID's (function names, class names, variable names)

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case sensitive:

Distinguishing upper- and lowercase characters. Easier to implement.

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case-insensitive:

Both the uppercase and lowercase forms of a character are considered by a computer program to be the same

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reserved words

Words that have predefined meanings that cannot be changed. *Keywords: private, void, static, etc. 25. Identifiers: names given to entities, such as variables, functions, structures, etc.

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Variable:

Location in memory that is subject to destructive update which is bound to a name. Value can change overtime.

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L-Value:

address location of variable in memory

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R-value:

Actual value that is stored in the memory address location

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Aliasing

One part of memory has multiple names leading to it

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Symbol Table

A data structure that links names to information about the objects denoted by the names. Keeps track of binding between name and memory locations.

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Storage

*Statically Allocated Variables *Dynamically Allocated Variables

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Binding

the association of a name with a variable or value. Also, the time when it happens

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Types of binding

*Static binding *Dynamic binding

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Static Binding:

Binding performs before program runs

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Dynamic Binding:

Binding performs while program is running

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Static Typing:

Types are checked before program runs PROS: *Faster Execution time *Readability in increased CONS: *No flexibility *More initial overhead

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Dynamic Typing:

Types are checked while program is running PROS: *Flexibility (no need to explicitly write type annotation) *Less initial overhead before deployment CONS: *Slower Execution Time *Decreased Readability

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Type annotation:

*Explicit *Implicit

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Explicit Typing:

Language demands the programmer explicitly state type

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Implicit Typing:

Language does no demand explicit denotation of data

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Destructive Updates

Any change to a memory location that replaces the current value

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Scope

Region in program in which the lifetime of a name is defined. Lexical region in which a name is visible/usable *Nested functions *Blocks *Order of declaration *Global variables

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Static Scope

Region is defined using lexical features, delimiters. *A region in a text of the program *Implemented using "blocks"

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Dynamic Scope

: Value is determined by the identifier associated with the most recent environment

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Scope Blocks:

Lexical region in program where a name is visible

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Constants:

Value can not be changed

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Data Types:

Primitive Data Types *Integral numbers *Floating point numbers *Boolean types *Character

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Integral Numbers:

Int: 32 bits = 4 bytes Byte: 8 bits = 1 byte Short: 16 bits = 2 bytes Long: 64 bits= 8 bytes

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floating point numbers:

Float: 32 bits = 4 bytes Double: 64 bits = 8 bytes

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Boolean type

Boolean: 8 bits = 1 byte bool: 8 bits = 1 byte

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Character:

character: 8 bits = 1 byte char: 8 bits = 1 byte

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string type:

-a string is a sequence of characters -the String type is used to declare variables that store strings -is not a primitive type: it is known as a class or reference type -one or more characters in double quotes -strings as character arrays

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Types of strings:

-Dynamic size up to a bound (array) -Constant size (immutable)

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Pointer

Special variables that allow access to l-values of memory locations

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Syntax

the rules for combining words into grammatically sensible sentences in a given language

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Semantics:

the set of rules by which we derive meaning from morphemes, words, and sentences in a given language; also, the study of meaning

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56

lexicon:

Valid words of the language. A dictionary; a specialized vocabulary used in a particular field or place

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57

grammar:

a set of rules that specify how the units of language can be combined to produce meaningful messages and sentences.

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