What is "Open Language"?

Richard Gaskin ambassador at fourthworld.com
Sat Oct 24 17:25:32 EDT 2015

JB wrote:
> If you do get Open Language what will it do to the
> speed?  They said LC8 would be good because it
> will make it easier for developers to write code in
> LC which needed to be and external before.
> Then after releasing it they said it is slower to use
> than a external written in C.
> I would prefer better lessons and examples to write
> externals if they are faster and the same goes for
> Open Language.

That's a different but important part of the Builder language, the 
ability to call OS APIs.

I've worked with OS APIs in Pascal, C, and two xTalks, Tookbook's 
OpenTalk scripting language which provides that built-in, and CompileIt 
for HyperTalk.

The one thing I've learned from that is that the language you're using 
isn't all that important, because no matter what you're writing in the 
OS you're talking to expects C:  it uses C data types and structures, 
provides tons of great sample source but all in C, and requires that you 
think like a C programmer, understanding and managing data in ways a 
good xTalk normally insulates from even having to think about - the 
difference between a pointer and a handle isn't interesting to most 
xTalkers, but can be essential in C.

By the time you become fluent enough in C to understand OS APIs well 
enough to use them, you've already learned enough to write in it as well.

I'm sure that part of Builder will be very interesting for some tasks, 
but if I could add to that wish list it would be to see the externals 
SDK made as easy as possible to work with, including examples for each 
of the supported platforms.

Monte's done an amazing job showing off what the externals SDK can do 
for extending LC.  It would be great to see more people jump on board 
with it.

  Richard Gaskin
  Fourth World Systems
  Software Design and Development for the Desktop, Mobile, and the Web
  Ambassador at FourthWorld.com                http://www.FourthWorld.com

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