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Fortifying macros

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  15 August 2012

RYAN CULPEPPER*
Affiliation:
School of Computing, Salt Lake City, Utah, USA (e-mail: ryanc@ccs.neu.edu)
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Abstract

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Existing macro systems force programmers to make a choice between clarity of specification and robustness. If they choose clarity, they must forgo validating significant parts of the specification and thus produce low-quality language extensions. If they choose robustness, they must write in a style that mingles the implementation with the specification and therefore obscures the latter. This paper introduces a new language for writing macros. With the new macro system, programmers naturally write robust language extensions using easy-to-understand specifications. The system translates these specifications into validators that detect misuses—including violations of context-sensitive constraints—and automatically synthesize appropriate feedback, eliminating the need for ad hoc validation code.

Type
Articles
Copyright
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2012

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