Friday, October 27, 2006

begin specification

Something that is not documented yet on the website is the begin directive. It appears on top of the source file, to indicate the entry point for that file if it is compiled as an executable. You specify the class that should be 'started', the class that contains the static procedure called `main'. This procedure will be called when the executable is run.

It's use was mandatory, but I am now making it optional in one case: when the file contains only one class. Because in that case the user's intention is obvious. This simplifies the Hello World example:
namespace Example
class Hello
static procedure main()
system.out.printLn("Hello, World!")
This Hello World program will change even more later. Namespaces will be removed and some module system, or a system like Java's packages will be adopted. And the function (or 'procedure') to output text to the console will probably be renamed.

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