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ABC programming language

ABC is an imperative language and programming environment from CWI, Netherlands. It is interactive, structured, high-level, and easy to learn and use. It is a general-purpose programming language which you might use instead of BASIC, Pascal, or AWK. It is not a systems-programming language but is good for teaching or prototyping.

ABC has only five data types that can easily be combined; strong typing, yet without declarations; data limited only by memory; refinements to support top-down programming; nesting by indentation. Programs are typically around a quarter the size of the equivalent Pascal or C program, and more readable.

ABC includes a programming environment with syntax-directed editing, suggestions, persistent variables and multiple workspaces and infinite precision arithmetic.

An example function words to collect the set of all words in a document:

  HOW TO RETURN words document:
     PUT {} IN collection
     FOR line in document:
        FOR word IN split line:
           IF word collection:
              INSERT word IN collection
     RETURN collection

Interpreter/compiler, version 1.05.02, by Leo Geurts, Lambert Meertens, Steven Pemberton . ABC has been ported to Unix, MS-DOS, Atari, Macintosh.

ABC was one of the influences in the design of the Python programming language.

See also Programming

External links

This article (or an earlier version of it) contains material from FOLDOC, used with permission.