Linked by David Welton on Mon 10th Mar 2003 21:42 UTC
Original OSNews Interviews The Tcl programming language has been immensely successful in its almost 15 years of existence. Tcl, stands for 'Tool Command Language' and is pronounced 'tickle' by those in the know. It's probably most famous for the Tk graphical toolkit, which has for years set the standard for rapid, scriptable, cross-platform GUI development, but the language is used throughout a staggering variety of applications, from the open source web server that runs AOL's web site, to code for network testing, to code to run oil rigs.
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Some thoughts on TCL
by Anton Klotz on Mon 10th Mar 2003 22:42 UTC

At the moment Im writing my diploma thesis with TCL. At first I found TCL to be very obscure, it has quite different philosophy to other languages I used to use (JAVA, C, Perl). But now I really adore it. TCL is very robust and it is very fast to develop a program with it. It often happens to me that during I think how to solve a problem I start to type and voila the problem is solved, so Im surprized how easy it was.

But there are a few points which really should be regarding if you program TCL:

1. Documentate everything! Three days after writing you need some time to understand what you did. After one month it is very hard. For an outstanding person it is quite impossible. Every other language is easier to read and understand what the programmer meant to do with his code.

2. Think about efficient programming. Instead of writing constucts like these: lreplace $list [lsearch $list $element] [lsearch $list $element]], first define the result of lsearch and then do lreplace. Don't forget that every operation is a complex algorithm, which takes time to proceed.

3. Do refer by refernce, not by value. It takes time and space. IMHO TCL lacks an efficient garbage collector which frees lists, which are not longer needed. Please dont blame me if this has changed in the latest versions, my company where I write my diploma thesis is pretty conservativ with upgrading.

Does anybody has futher tips how to improve speed of the programm? I have to handle a lot of data, so Im happy about every speedup-tip I can get. Thanks.

Greetings from Anton and long live and prosper TCL.