REST Questions

Jeff Bone jbone@jump.net
Sun, 26 Aug 2001 01:18:14 -0500


Dave Winer wrote:

> For me it's all
> about cross-network scripting, nothing more or less. Dave

I'm with ya, Dave:  it's hugely important.

So Dave, here's a question for you:  what constitutes "scripting" vs.
"programming"?  How does a scripting language differ from a programming
language, from a usage perspective and from an (internal) implementation
perspective?

Is Perl a scripting language?  Python?  Javascript?  Is scripting just
synonymous with "interpreted?"  Is any language that can be used interactively /
has a REPL a "scripting" language?

I'm leaning towards a POV these days which says that true scripting languages
focus on higher-order primitives for composition / integration / orchestration
of coarse-grained components.  By that definition, I'm not sure that the above
languages, for instance, are truly "scripting" languages;  they focus more on
providing primitives for defining and operating on domain abstractions at a
finer-grained level than, say, the Unix shell.  Not that a scripting language
couldn't *have* those things, just that they might need higher-order things like
| and friends.  A scripting language by this definition might in a sense be
regarded as a coordination language.

Sigh...  definitional craziness. :-)

Just some random thoughs.  I'm scouring through a bunch of old reuse literature
right now, trying to piece together a train of thought...  I've got this gut
hunch that there's something really fundamental and quantifiable in all this
REST etc. discussion that speaks directly to qualities and characteristics of
system architecture, modeling, programming paradigms, etc. which profoundly
influence software reuse.

jb