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Assignment semantics

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Re: Assignment semantics

Alan Cox
> be which *type* of language do you want OpenSCAD to be?  What are the
> established norms for *that* kind of language?  What are the known points of
> confusion (esp. for users primarily trained in the other point of view)?


I think that's a fairly easy question to answer. OpenSCAD describes the
nature of a 3D object at a fixed point in time. It has no concept of
time and flow therefore it's functional.

That's also fairly important for optimisation and performance - in its
current form the language is highly parallelisable, even if the current
engine doesn't do that.

If you want to use it as a library in a procedural fashion then you can
either invent an entire new procedudural language or you could write a
tool that writes openscad or you could make a library usable by existing
languages.

While it's fun to invent new languages (witness the fact no two lisp
programmers speak the same dialect) I'm not convinced that trying to add
any of the procedural things to OpenSCAD and having it expand until it can
read email are actually useful. We have a wide range of perfectly good
procedural languages and library interfaces already.

> Is it the fate of OpenSCAD to have “everything except a good CSG modeler”?
>
> Questions to ponder: in what language is OpenSCAD *implemented*?  in what language
> is the semantics of OpenSCAD *defined*? (that may be a sore point…)

The former is I think irrelevant. It's already been sort of implemented in
several languages.
 
> In my opinion, OpenSCAD discussions could be much improved by paying *some* attention
> to what has gone before, and some attention to standard usage and terminology.
> We might start with “cube”.

Yes at some point once it stops being a language prototype it probably
makes sense for a grand tidy up to happen. I don't think the language is
remotely approaching that point given some bits of it are hideous, other
bits missing and there are major areas that it isn't at all obvious how
you would extend it to cover (from bending and object along a path to
texturing)

Alan
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