Falcon - powering innovation


#1

If anybody is interesed in new technologies, you’ll love this new
language called Falcon [1], which has been open sourced ago little
time.

Falcon is a scripting engine ready to empower mission-critical
multithreaded applications. It provides six integrated programming
paradigms: procedural, object oriented, prototype oriented,
functional, tabular and message oriented. You use what you prefer.

To know more about its design, read the interview to the Falcon author
that has published ComputerWorld Australia [2].

[1] http://www.falconpl.org/
[2]
http://www.computerworld.com.au/article/298655/-z_programming_languages_falcon?fp=2&fpid=


#2

On the first page I was greated withy this example:

“Hello world!”

…which would suggest it uses the greater then sign as a printf. So
then what if I write something like this:

if a > some_function()

Am I say: “if (a) printf(some_function())” or is this just all the
condition line, such as: “if (a > some_function())”. Code syntactic
sugar is nice to have, but not when I welcome in all sorts of cases of
ambiguity.


#3

To compile it one needs cmake. Unfortunately I was not able to build it.

The Io Language has a similar problem - I can not compile it.

I am sorry to say, but this is frustrating for me.

Python, Ruby and Perl all compile here from source for me without ANY
problem.
I think new languages should put big emphasis to try to stay on par with
the existing scripting languages. Maybe Falcon is better than i.e.
python, but if I am too stupid to compile it, whereas ruby python and
perl all work nicely (as opposed to compiling Falcon or Io), then I just
stick to what gives me less problems.

That being said, Falcon seems to have some really cool ideas. Who knows,
maybe one day ruby learns from falcon :slight_smile:


#4
   attr_accessor #{property}
 end

}
end

Actually, this is a hack already. (Warning, the parameter order is
1.9 only).

def self.makeClassWithProp(name, superclass = Object, property)
c = Class.new(superclass) {
attr_accessor property
}
const_set(name, c)
end

Is a nice and clean way to get that working. This generates a Subclass
to the Module/Class this Method is defined in.

Regards,
Florian


Florian G.

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#5

Kless wrote:

that has published ComputerWorld Australia [2].
Nice language (I like all new languages :). Please don’t read any of my
words as criticism.

The Falcon Facts Table 1 is not 100% right about Ruby.

  • Document Template: There was eruby in the past (maybe it still exists)
    that was a binary. Other than that, “Document Templating” can be
    emulated by
    this one-liner:

    ruby -rerb -e"puts ERB.new(STDIN.read).result" < rubyfile.rhtml

And then, I don’t think this is an important fact and should
definitively
not be built into the language itself.

  • Multithreading: Ruby 1.8 had portable multithreading (it even worked
    under
    DOS a decade ago). Ruby 1.9 has native OS threads, which are a lot more
    scalable than green threads of Ruby 1.8. But basically the same applies
    as
    for Python. I guess JRuby is a lot more scalable in this regard.

  • Embeddability: You can embed Ruby into a C application in 10 lines of
    code. But usually you write wrappers of a C library and call it from
    Ruby.
    What you can’t do is to embed multiple instances of Ruby into your
    application (you can do that with Rubinius).

  • C Dynamic Library Interface: Ruby ships with “dl”, with which you can
    access dynamic libraries.

  • Compile time metaprogramming: I don’t see a huge difference to Ruby’s
    metaprogramming here. You can do exactly the same with evaluating
    strings,
    e.g.

    def makeClassWithProp(name, property)
    eval %{
    class #{name}
    attr_accessor #{property}
    end
    }
    end

  • Procedural programming: Well, methods are very similar to procedures.
    If
    you write methods in the toplevel (without a class declaration), they
    are
    part of class Object. I don’t see a huge difference to procedures :slight_smile:

  • Functional Programming: I’d give Python here a clear “yes”, as
    Python’s
    methods are actually functions. You can definitively pass other
    functions as
    parameters to functions in Python. In Ruby, there are also functions
    (“blocks”) that you can pass to methods. So I’d give Ruby at least a
    partial
    here and Python a clear “yes”.

  • Prototype-oriented: Ruby has singleton methods.
    a = Array.new
    def a.new_method
    “hallo”
    end
    p a.new_method # => “hallo”
    Array.new.new_method #=> method missing

    So this is at least a “partial”, like Python :slight_smile:

  • Direct binary data access: Both Python and Ruby have libraries that
    ship
    by default that deal with this. In Ruby this is done by methods #pack
    and
    #unpack.

  • Virtual filesystem: There is open-uri, a library which provides
    kind-of
    virtual filesystem:

    ruby -ropen-uri -e’puts open('http://www.ruby-lang.org/’).read’


IMHO, Falcon mixes too many things into one language, without having a
clear
advantage over languages like Python or Ruby (at least I haven’t seen a
clear feature that Python or Ruby doesn’t have). I like Ruby because of
it’s
simplicity and well-thought-out underlying model (everything is an
object),
and not to forget the principle of (matz’s) least suprise in the core
libraries. Having too many concepts in a language is not always a good
thing.

Regards,

Michael