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November 02, 2008 — BarryK
NathanO sent me a pm about Kbasic, after he saw my posting about Wirbel. Yes, it's a compiler, with OO extensions, but uses the Qt GUI library. The GUI builder looks nice though. But, what I want needs to have a very clean OO syntax, not "bolted on". Also, I need to write utility apps that are very small -- I could not find any information about the size of Kbasic executables, which most likely means the worst -- it reminds me of RealBasic, which has "Hello World" about 2MB.

Here is someone's comment about Kbasic versus Python (

First, looking at the syntax KBasic supports made me cringe. I firmly believe that BASIC in any carnation is bound to be evil. (I would certainly suggest using Python as your first language! or one of the many of the other available scripting languages besides BASIC.)

Second, this doesn't matter, because (from what I've seen, at least) KBasic is out to liberate Visual Basic users, rather than provide a useful language. They certainly aren't out to win over Python, PHP or Perl users! In this sense, KBasic is the most wonderful thing available to those stuck with lots of VB code! If successful, those who programmed in VB will be able to get away from it, and even port their code to an alternative OS. This is very good.

Perhaps those making the transition will someday buckle down and learn a new language, like Python. If they do so, however, they can make the transition smoothly, still being productive in KBasic while learning a real language like Python.

Heh heh, I think it was rarsa (?) who once commented that the mention of Basic, whatever dialect, made him break out in a rash!

We already have Mark's PuppyBasic and GtkBasic, very nice, but they are interpreters. And we have FreeBasic, a compiler, which is quite good and meets my compact size requirement. But, the syntax is a mish-mash that has grown higgledy piggledy over the years, heading toward being object oriented. I reckon that FreeBasic is still quite good though -- well, that's why I put it into the 'devx' sfs file.

Here is an overview of Kbasic:


programming Woof
Username: Lobster
Python is fun and available for kids compiler kids version bourne shell compiler write your own language - radical ideas available

Username: tempestuous
"Off-topic, but there's a report of another useful PREFLIST entry where "gspca" should be given preference over "zc0301" for webcams -

Username: Flapdoodle
"Some years ago I wrote a Beowulf in UBASIC. It can't be beat for shear speed since UBASIC is written entirely in assembly. Not sure how compatible it is with Linux.

BASICally beyond hope
Username: jeffrey
"A quote from Edsger Dijkstra (revered computer scientist of the 1970s): "It is practically impossible to teach good programming to students that have had a prior exposure to BASIC: as potential programmers they are mentally mutilated beyond hope of regeneration." He also said, "The use of COBOL cripples the mind; its teaching should, therefore, be regarded as a criminal offence." I hope my employer doesn't notice what languages I started my career with... See for more.

Alternative to bash
Username: Raffy
"Wasn't the search for an alternative to Bash? Mark Ulrich already has done a lot of work for Gtkbasic: I also recall that there is already an IDE for Wxbasic (it's in the Forum).

Yes it does give me a rash
Username: rarsa
"And I'm still scratching from your post. :) "Basic" languages facilitate (if not right down promote) bad development practices. I understand that for non professional developers it does not matter as they don't know those practices from the get go. Bad development practices lead to code that is more difficult to maintain and more prone to bugs. They are great for people with little development experience, for small apps, personal projects that require quick implementation. i.e. throw aways (although some live on to haunt us for years) Other languages facilitate and promote good development practices, again, weather the user knows it or not. Of course a good language won't make a bad developer good. I've seen beautiful BASIC code and awful spaghetti Java code but the opposite is much more common.

Back to the future with tcl...
Username: Springer
"Barry, it sounds like what you're really looking for is the tcl that was just recently thrown overboard: Very easy to program, extremely powerful (there's a reason tcl is the brains behind a huge chunk of the software testing done in the world today), very small size (source, interpreter, library, etc.), and with a critical mass of knowledge in using it. While there are certainly those that don't like tcl because it's not one of the "trendy" languages, it's a real workhorse, and probably a far better fit for Puppy than any version of BASIC, Perl, Python, or Ruby. I also personally find that tcl offers awesome leverage, often allowing a couple of simple, intuitive lines to replace dozens of lines in other languages. That's one reason a friend of mine says tcl stands for "try coding less"...

Tags: woof