Re: [stella] BAStella Language Reference V0.000000001

Subject: Re: [stella] BAStella Language Reference V0.000000001
From: <erik@xxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Sat, 24 Nov 2001 00:16:46 -0500
11/23/2001 8:03:10 AM, "Roger Williams" <mer02@xxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:

>> I'd just generate an .asm file and rely on an assembler to generate the
>> object code.  If you can distribute a DASM with it, it's all transparent
>> the user.
>I thought of this, but it's really a pain if you are scripting back and
>nonexistent to crappy error reporting.

Good point, I missed that.  The CS major in me wants to see BAStella
written with mathematical proofs that it will never transform valid
BASIC code into invalid 6502 code.  But the experienced 2600
programmer in me knows that ain't happening. :)

>OTOH I'm already thinking of having BAStella output a .bin that
>displays an error message when an error occurs for this reason...
>I could just have it output a compilable source (hell, it could be
>composed of .byte statements.  Hmmmmm.)

That'd be too clunky IMO; just have BAStella report the error.

BTW, are you envisioning this as a full-blown IDE or a command-line

>> You're talking something like 100-150 cycles for a general-purpose
>> multiplication routine, using shifts and adds.  Although ISTR someone
>> posting a good such routine to this list several years ago...?
>Yes, but that's why you're using a high-level language.  I have done a
>lot of programming in recent years in truly crappily slow automated
>controller languages.  That's one reason the code runs asynchronously;
>you can slip two or three frames on an infrequent operation, then
>catch up and the slip is hardly visible.  (It's hard to believe how well
>this works unless you've seen it.)  That's much harder to do with
>synchronized code.

I have a hard time believing that multiplication would be an infrequent
operation, in that it would only occur on some frames.  You'll need
either some wizardly optimization for this, or a warning that you can't
use very many multiplications per frame.

>> Grr.  Give me the BASIC straightforward syntax over "what kind of brace
>> do I use here?" syntax any day.  And whoever came up with that dumb
>> semicolon should be beaten.  Line breaks are infinitely more natural to
>> humans to represent "end of thought".
>Whoever came up with "the program is just a stream of characters"
>should be tied to an ant hill.

The interactive IDE that corrects code as you write was an invaluable
advance for QuickBasic and I can't live without it in VB.  Why in the WORLD
is this not yet present in C compilers TWELVE YEARS LATER? </rant>

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