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The Taub Faculty of Computer Science Events and Talks

A Language Approach to Language Preprocessing
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Iddo Zmiry (M.Sc. Thesis Seminar)
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Wednesday, 24.02.2016, 13:30
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Taub 601
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Advisor: Associate Professor Yossi Gil
The C preprocessor (cpp) is probably the most familiar macro preprocessor. However, it lacks the expressibility of general purpose programming languages. We propose a language approach to preprocessing, based on writing code in a high-level programming language. Our intent is to make it easy to identify structures in source files, and therefore be able to use reflection to some extent. We also suggest a flexible syntax for macro calls, for adding constructs that are more intuitive to the individual programmer, and that fit better in the specific programming domain. These goals are achieved without making an intrusive extension to the programming language, and without any runtime impact. We aspire to make these features accessible by using regular expressions with some extensions, and taking the design goal of simple syntax, in the spirit of the C preprocessor's syntax. Our vision is to create a solution for writing macros in a similar way to writing in a "true" programming language.