Tuesday 7:00 - 9:00
Room 101, Warren Weaver Hall
Professor Edmond Schonberg
Room 410, Warren Weaver Hall
Instructor: Edmond Schonberg (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Office hours: Tuesday 5:00 to 6:30 pm, and by appointment.
Teaching Assistant: zilin (email@example.com)
Office hours: Wednesday 4:00 to 5:00 pm, and by appointment.
We will examine basic concepts underlying the design of modern programming
languages: types, control structures, abstraction mechanisms, inheritance,
concurrency, constructs for programming in the large, etc. This is not a
programming course per se, but there will be programming assignments in
several languages, imperative and functional. The languages are chosen
because of the interest of their features, and not necessarily because of
their wide use. We will touch on Ada, C++, C#, Java, LISP, ML, Python,
Scheme, and mention many others.
Undergraduate courses in data structures and algorithms, familiarity and
programming experience with one of the following: C, C++, Ada,Java, or Pascal.
Programming assignments, final examination, roughly in the same weight, i.e.
the final represents half of the grade.
Michael Scott: Programming Language Pragmatics (Morgan Kaufman 2000)
This is a excellent recent text that covers both language design and
compiler fundamentals. In your readings for this course you don't need to
study sections that deal with translation and compiler construction issues,
but that material is interesting, and you will examine it in more detail when
you take the Compiler Construction course.
John Barnes: Programming in Ada95 Addison Wesley
We will study Ada in some detail, because the language design highlights some
fundamental issues about programming in general. This is the standard text
on the language.
You must have some good text on C++ and on Java. For C++ the 3rd edition of
Stroustrup: the C++ programming Language, is the standard reference. For
Java, the language definition is given in: Gosling, Joy and Steele:
the Java Language Specification.
For both languages, there are several introductory texts by Horstmann
that are very well-written, and innumerable others.
We will discuss functional languages, specifically Scheme and ML, for which
there is abundant on-line documentation. The older book by Ravi Sethi:
Programming Languages, Concepts and Constructs, has several good chapters
on functional languages.
We will discuss scripting and so-called very high level languages, and
focus on Python, There is abundant on-line documentation for it, and several
programming texts and users guides from O'Reilly.
All students should register themselves with the class list, which is used for
all technical discussions concerning the course. To
register, go to the following web page, and follow the instructions:
You can also subscribe by sending an e-mail message to
contents of the message should be the single line:
you will be notified in return that you are a list participant. Please send
all your questions to this list (not to the instructor) so that everyone can
You are free to do the programming assignments on any machine you choose,
either the NYU servers, some other machine at work, or a personal computer
at home. For each programming assignment, Indicate what compiler you used.
Using the GNAT compiler on SUN servers
The GNAT compiler is installed on the CS servers. To access the system, place
the directory /usr/local/pkg/gnat/bin in your path. The basic compilation comnand is gnatmake.
If your test program is called numbers.adb, you create an
executable for it simply by writing:
which you can execute by writing: ./numbers
If you want to compile a single file, write:
gcc -c numbers.adb
You can also install gnat on your personal computer, by downloading the
appropriate version from the NYU ftp site, ftp cs.nyu.edu, directory pub/gnat.
Finally, you can install and use the ObjectAda compiler that comes with
the Barnes text.
Copious information on Ada, including programming environments, software,
and tools, can be found at