Choosing Programming Language
Glossary Item Box
Choosing the right programming language is important, but it depends on your background and skill level. Decentralized Software Services (DSS) are typically written in C# which is similar in many ways to C++ or Java. The Microsoft Visual Programming Language (VPL) is a drag-and-drop environment, called a dataflow language, that can use DSS services but does not require as much programming skill as C#. If you are a VB programmer, you should investigate C#. Much of the code in C# looks similar to VB because it relies on .NET Framework APIs.
C# is the preferred language for the development of DSS services. You can use any of the Visual Studio Editions including the Microsoft Visual Studio Express Editions for writing C# code.
|Visual Studio Express Editions are limited to supporting a single language. For example, if you have the Visual Studio Visual Basic Express Edition then you can only modify VB.NET code and similarly for the other Visual Studio Express Editions. You need the Visual C# Express Edition to write code for RDS. If you want to use multiple .NET languages then you can install the respective Visual Studio Express Editions side-by-side on the same machine.|
Microsoft Visual Programming Language
Microsoft Visual Programming Language (VPL), is an application development environment designed around a graphical dataflow-based programming model rather than control flow typically found in conventional programming. Rather than series of imperative commands sequentially executed, a dataflow program is more like a series of workers on an assembly line, who do their assigned task as the materials arrive. As a result VPL is well suited to programming a variety of concurrent or distributed processing scenarios. See VPL Introduction.
VPL is targeted for beginning programmers with a basic understanding of concepts like variables and logic. However, VPL is not limited to novices. The compositional nature of the programming language may appeal to more advanced programmers for rapid prototyping or code development. In addition, while the contents of its toolbox is tailored developing robot applications, the underlying architecture is not limited to programming robots. VPL could be applied to other applications. As a result, VPL may appeal to a wide audience of users. Such a group of users might include students, enthusiasts/hobbyists, as well as possibly web developers and professional programmers.
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