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EETimes: Tcl adds extensibility to design tools

Sep 29, 1999, 01:44 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by John Ousterhout)

"Increases in processor speed and memory sizes are making it possible to incorporate scripting in embedded systems themselves. This offers the potential of reducing deployment costs and allowing a new class of value-added applications to be created for embedded systems..."

"Tcl is a particularly simple and powerful example of a scripting language. Essentially, it was created to serve as a command language for applications. The goal was to incorporate Tcl into an application and then combine the features of the application with those of Tcl to form a command language. This resulted in two key properties. First, Tcl is embeddable: Its interpreter is a library package that can be linked into an application. Second, Tcl is extensible: It provides a set of APIs that can be used to create new features in the language..."

"The Tcl scripting language has several properties that suit it for onboard use in embedded systems. The embeddable nature makes it easy to incorporate into embedded systems: The Tcl library package can simply be linked into the run-time system of the device. Tcl's extensibility makes it easy to expose selected features of the device in the Tcl interpreter, and its APIs for extension are comprehensive and well-documented and provide considerable power to the extension writer."

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