scripting languages : Java Glossary
- scripting languages
Scripting languages are used to chain applications together into batch streams.
Scripting languages let you invoke various Java utilities and do simple calculations.
They are also used interactively where you type a line and have it executed
immediately. Some Java-based platform independent scripting languages have been
Traditionally, scripting languages have had the ugliest syntaxes of any type of
computer language. The ugliest surely has to be Windows/DOS command line. Other
popular ones include Python, Bash, TCL/TK,
Awk and Perl.
Because they are designed for one-shot command line use, the syntax of such
languages tends to be loosey goosey (i.e. slovenly) with no type checking.
Usually scripting languages are interpreted (without even being preparsed) rather
than compiled. Usually they have many platform and implementation dependencies.
Usually they are a disgusting pile of seat-of-the-pants kludges piled on another. You
might gather I don’t hold this branch of computer science in high regard.
I suggest avoiding these traditional scripting languages altogether and using
ordinary Java instead for the same purpose. Use Jikes for compile speed. The
- familiarity. Only one language to learn.
- Platform independence. Write once run anywhere.
- Structured ifs, object-oriented design, methods, parameters, types, sane
variable names, threads, timers, etc. all the features that make writing complex
- You can use a user-friendly GUI (Graphic User Interface)
interface, (or a command line), to get direction from the user.
- You only have to specify each fact in only one place. Inheritance lets you
build defaults on defaults.
- Fast execution of compiled code.
- If you are running Java apps, you don’t need to load a fresh
JVM (Java Virtual Machine) for every step. You can for example compile 1000
java programs in one go feeding them via directly to Java’s sun.tools.javac.Main.compile method.
- There are no artificial limits on the length of the command line, environment
- You can use a customiser class that implements an interface to provide input to
a program. That class can provide an arbitrary amount of data, guaranteed to be
already in the internal type expected. It can provide arrays, trees files or
Collections. It can provide custom algorithms. You don’t have to invent a way
to pack all this information on the command line, parse it and validate it. You
don’t have to specify your data is some impossible to proof-read command-line
format. You just fill in the stubs of a Java class to provide the data. It gives
you infinite flexibility with no extra overhead or complexity.