[antlr-interest] Re: What's the SLK Parser Generator?

mrosgood mrosgood at yahoo.com
Tue Oct 8 13:00:55 PDT 2002

Terence Parr-

Thanks for humoring me.  You may recall that, having only ever used
ANTLR, I don't know a whole lot about this domain.

The real reason I asked is because I need one of those super duper
text editors that's smart enough to recognize the language and all that.  

I've got this GUI description language called Giraffe.  It's a mush of
ideas, borrowing notions from XUL, VRML, RELAX-NG, and some other
stuff.  The Big Idea is to have "live" Giraffe source code in one
window and the real live GUI in other.  Change the source and --
voila! -- the GUI changes.  Drop a new control onto the GUI and --
voila! -- the source changes.  (Ever since my LISP days, I've nurtured
a deep hate for edit-compile-debug loop style development.)


These papers appear to be the best thing going on:

"An Incremental Lr Parse Strategy for Language-Based Editors"

"Incremental parsing in language-based editors: user needs and how to
meet them"  P. Cook and J. Welsh 
Software: Practice and Experience 2001; Vol 31: 1461-1486.  
John Wiley & Sons.

I contacted Phil Cook and apparently the algorithm in the second paper
fixes some problems.  Alas, it's not available online.

Anyway, Cook's work uses a tweaked version of YACC (adds more stuff to
the parse table).  They determined that LL(k)'s backtracking is too
inefficient to be used interactively.  So when I saw SLK, and its
claim of being table driven, I thought maybe there's an opportunity.

You can see that I'm grasping at straws here... <grin>

Cheers, Jason Osgood / Seattle WA


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