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© 1997-2006
Gareth Knight
All Rights reserved




The Rebol

A new programming language by the creator of the Amiga 'EXEC', Carl Sassenrath. It is intended to be a small, flexible language for sharing content (documents, databases, programs, multimedia) between people, computers, processors and networks. Rebol, (pronounced Rebel) stands for Relative Expression-Based Object Language, is designed to be both platform and network protocol-independent. The application is greatly simplified through the use of expressions that are understandable by the user as well as the computer. It also supports a wide range of current APIs and standard protocols. For people who have never heard of it, it is similar in many ways to ARexx, shipped as standard with all Amiga from version 2.00. It is an interpreted scripting language that allows Rebol-based software to be run on any operating system that the Rebol kernel is available for. Unlike Java from Sun, Rebol takes a more open approach with versions available for a wide range of systems.

Based upon the concept that Simple Things Should Be Simple, Difficult things should be possible, Rebol is a distributed, object language which interprets symbolic, dynamically-scooped, relational environments and promises to revolutionise the way people interact with their computer. Carl Sassenrath commented to Business Wire,

"All other programming and scripting languages are computer-centric languages. REBOL, on the other hand, is human-centric. The introduction of REBOL heralds a new era in which people control their computers, not the other way around."

The REBOL/Core messaging language is OS-independent, in a similar style to Java, and best of all the Amiga supports it from the beginning. The current list of operating system support has increased dramatically and is available on the AIX, AmigaOS, FreeBSD, HP-UX, SGI IRIX, Linux Red Hat, Linux Debian, Linux Slackware, Macintosh PPC, Solaris 2.6 SPARC, and Windows 95/98/NT platforms. Carl Sassenrath has also pointed out his willingness to support other formats if there is demand for it.

Future versions will boast multithreading, UniCode support, as well as direct support for visual and audio output- one of the many problems with version 1 was the lack of support for creating full GUI-driven applications, forcing the programmer to tie it in with another language such as MUI. There will also be more support for internet protocols and new datatype support, as well as greater error feedback.

Many industrial analysts have also commented on its ease-of-use compared to other languages, in particular, Rick Snyder, president of Avalon Investments, and more interesting from an Amiga point of view, former president of Gateway 2000. The language has gained support for its modern outlook on computer technology addressing technological problems that did not exist 5 years ago. When compared to the 15 year old languages currently available the Rebol language has a considerable advantage over its competitors.

To find out more go to WWW.rebol.com. There is also a mailing list that can be subscribed by sending a mail to rebot@rebol.com with Add in the subject. 




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