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One particular web development tool which has not been discussed as much as others is that of TCL. TCL stands for Tool Command Language and was originally developed by John Ousterhout due to continuously having to deal with poor quality application embedding languages. Since its development though, the language grew in popularity rather quickly due to a shallow learning curve. However, although it is considered to be fairly easy for one to learn, in the proper hands TCL can actually be a very powerful tool that is very helpful with rapid prototyping as well as development of scripted languages and the creation as well as testing of graphical user interfaces. In most cases, it is utilised as an embedding platform irregardless of whether the complete version is used or any number of its smaller footprint counterparts. Furthermore, while TCL has been used extensively for application development, it also serves a great purpose in the world of CGI scripting.

 

The GUI, or graphical user interface most commonly used in conjunction with that of TCL is none other then the TK GUI in which case they are referred to simply as TCL/TK. It was actually back in 1988 at the University of California in Berkeley, when Mr. Ousterhout first developed TCL and today there are a number of conferences as well as workshops held annually in both the United States as well as across the European Union.

Using a Prefix notation, everything used in TCL is actually a command and they can be varied. Furthermore, they can be redefined as well as overridden should the developer see fit to do so. In the case of data types, these can be considered as strings and as such are easily manipulated. But most of all, the syntactic rules regarding the use of TCL is considered by a great number of people to be one of the simplest around.

Because of its extensibility features, TCL can work via not just C or C++, but also Java and of course itself. The code itself is far more compact than the various equivalent languages which is why it continues to be a very popular choice by some. As far as the web goes, it can be utilised as a means of embedding server side includes into a webpage as well as being fully capable of working with the PostgreSQL database.

Since it was released under a BSD license, this also means that use of the programming language is completely free with some various restrictions of course. Of course when it was first developed, it was not capable of supporting object oriented syntax, the more recent releases of TCL do. Furthermore, there have also been a number of other improvements to its extensibility through the use of extensions and since its initial development, one can now get extensions to allow TCL to work with virtually every single type of database making it much more easier to function in an internet setting.

Original Authors: Nick
Edit Update Authors: M.A.Harris
Updated On: 30/01/2009

 


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