POV-Ray : Newsgroups : povray.pov4.discussion.general : Random POV-Ray 4 SDL proposal, #1 : Re: Random POV-Ray 4 SDL proposal, #1 Server Time
23 Sep 2021 11:17:07 EDT (-0400)
  Re: Random POV-Ray 4 SDL proposal, #1  
From: jr
Date: 16 Jul 2021 09:35:00
Message: <web.60f189a12ab8183e5e0fed26cde94f1@news.povray.org>

clipka <ano### [at] anonymousorg> wrote:
> Am 14.07.2021 um 11:35 schrieb jr:
> > have you looked at Tcl/Tk yet, for inspiration?  has many (imo) natty features,
> > nice, clean syntax, and byte-compiles.
> ...
> At a very first glance, Tcl/Tk sounds like a promising basis: Its main
> purpose (nowadays) is also to describe hierarchical structures (albeit
> not geometric objects and surface properties, but rather GUI elements),
> with programmatic elements mixed in for good measure. Unfortunately, the
> Tk part (which is the description of GUI elements) was bolted on later,
> and in my opinion it shows. At its very core, Tcl is a command
> shell-style scripting language.

yes and no.  I'd argue that the interpreter is the core.  and that is designed
to be extended (with "package"s and other mechanisms), and designed to be
embedded, that is provide scripting support to an application.

> One of the results is that different Tcl statements may have their own
> individual quirky "micro-syntax". Just like all of POV-Ray's individual
> geometric primitive, pattern and what-have-you statements all have their
> own little "micro-syntax" quirks. Any commonalities between them are
> just superficial conventions. Which bothers me to no end.

would not, in the end, a database "backbone" allow to, bit by bit, reduce the
"chaos"? (for instance, the stuff provided in the many /include/ files, if
pre-processed and stored in a db, could then allow the parser to simply "paste"
the code actually used, on demand so to speak)

> In my opinion, the best approach to judge a language for suitability as
> the basis for a new SDL is to ask (and answer) the following three
> questions:
> - "What is the 'grammar' of this language, i.e. the core principles that
> govern its syntax?"
> And based on that:
> - "How would a simple scene be described in this language?"
> (A chrome sphere on a colorful checkered plane, with camera and all, and
> maybe a text object to showcase strings, should do as a first example.)
> - "How would programmatic elements mesh with this syntax?"
> (A simple example with a loop and a few conditionals should be a
> reasonable starting point.)
> When I do that for Tcl/Tk, I find that the results look - in my mind -
> ugly AF.

agree that "just translating" does not work too well.  and the fact that Tcl
does not provide "traditional" arrays is another drawback.  still (biased and
all) I think that owing to its design, a SDL/Tcl could make a "nice hybrid".

regards, jr.

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