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Language Evaluation Criteria PPL

Language Evaluation Criteria:

Some of the language criterias to evaluate a programming language are:

  1. Readability
  2. Writability
  3. Reliability
  4. Cost
  5. Generality
  6. Extensibility
  7. Standardability
  8. Support for internationalization
  1. Readability: Coding should be simple and clear to understand.
    1. Simplicity: Should not involve complex syntax, many ways to perform a single task,overloading of methods and operator etc.
    2. Orthogonality: This means relatively small set of primitive constructs can be combine.
      • For ex., int  *count; Here pointer and integer is combined.
      • Another ex., int count[ 5 ]; Here array and pointer is combine.
    3. Control Statements: There should be adequate control statements.
      • Use of  for loop, while loop, do while loop is adequate.
      • Using of go to statements causes poor readability.
    4. Data Types and Structures: Language should involve adequate facilities for defining data types and data structure.
      • For ex., timeout = 1; is unclear as compare to timeout = true;.
    5. Syntax Design: Syntax design affects the readability in the following way.
      1. Identifier forms: Restriction to very short length of identifier is a barrier to readability.
      2. Special words: Special words like while, for, class, int affects the readability of any language. If special words are allowed to be variable names than it will become confusing.
  2. Writability: Writability is a measure of how easily language can be used to code.Most of the language characteristics that affect readability also affect writability. 
    1. Simplicity: Should not involve complex syntax, many ways to perform a single task,overloading of methods and operator etc.
    2. Orthogonality: This means relatively small set of primitive constructs can be combine.
      • For ex., int  *count; Here pointer and integer is combined.
      • Another ex., int count[ 5 ]; Here array and pointer is combine.
    3. Support for Abstraction: Language should support process and data abstraction.
    4. Expressivity: In less lines of code program should be writable. 
      • For ex., for statements makes counting loops easier than while.
      • Another ex., is i++ is more expressive than i=i+1.
  3. Reliability: A program is said to be reliable if it performs to irs specifications under all conditions.
    1. Type Checking: It is testing for type error, either at compile or run time.
      • For ex., float percentage; is more desirable as compare to int percentage.
    2. Exception Handling: It is the ability of program to handle run time error. Remember, handling runtime error are more expensive than compile errors.
    3. Aliasing: It is same memory location (variable) having more than one name. Which is causes confusion.
    4. Readability: Readability influences reliability.
    5. Writability: Writability also influence reliability.
  4. Cost: Total cost of programming should be minimum.
    • For ex., cost of trainer.
    • Cost of writing algorithm.
    • Cost of compiling program in the language.
    • Cost of hardware required for program.
    • Cost of maintenance.
  5. Generality: Language should not be limited to specific application only.
  6. Extensibility: Should be flexible, must be able to add new constructs.
  7. Standardability: Language should be platform independent.
  8. Support for Internationalisation: Various formats like time, date, currency etc should be supportable.
A lecture video on languge evaluation criteria

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