Monday, May 19, 2008

Rewrite BASIC language today?

In the Usenet group alt.lang.basic there was a thread recently with the subject heading "Rewrite BASIC language today?" where the question was explored about how BASIC would be written in today's programming world.

Clearly there is a wide range of opinions in the responses. Some opted for being retro and simple. Some advocated adding commands for dealing with various things. It's good to have a discussion about these sorts of things, and this one went well. There are a lot of experienced BASIC programmers in that forum and it didn't turn into a flame war.

In my own response I wrote "BASIC needs to be simple. Adding C or Java features is a mistake for the most part. There is value in keeping things out of the language."

There needs to be a balance. Sometimes it makes good sense to add new things to a language. But as I just said... sometimes. ;-)