This is a list of programming languages
grouped by category.
Array programming (also known as vector or multidimensional languages) generalize operations on scalars to apply transparently to vectors, matrices, and higher dimensional arrays.
Assembly languages directly correspond to a machine language (see below) in order to allow machine code instructions to be written in a form understandable by humans. Assembly languages allow programmers to use symbolic addresses which are later converted to absolute addresses by the assembler. Most assemblers also allow for macros and symbolic constants.
- AKI (AvtoKod "Inzhener", "Engineer's Autocode" for Minsk family of computers)
- ASCENT (ASsembler for CENTral Processor Unit of Control Data Corporation computer systems pre-COMPASS)
- ASPER (ASsembler for PERipheral Processor Units of Control Data Corporation computer systems pre-COMPASS)
- BAL (Basic AssembLer) - for IBM System/360 and later mainframe systems
- C-- (name used by a few languages that bring C language closer to Assembly)
- COMPASS (COMPrehensive ASSembler)
- Emu8086 (x86 assembler and Intel's 8086 microprocessor emulator)
- EDTASM (Microsoft editor/assembler for Motorola 6809 on the Color Computer)
- FAP (FORTRAN Assembly Program, for IBM 709, 7090, 7094 mainframes)
- FASM (Flat Assembler; IA-32, IA-64)
- GAS (GNU Assembler)
- HLA (High Level Assembly)
- HLASM (High Level Assembler, for mainframes)
- Linoleum (for cross platform use)
- MACRO-11 (for DEC PDP-11)
- MACRO-20 (for DEC DECSYSTEM-20)
- MACRO-32 (for DEC VAX)
- MASM (Microsoft Macro Assembler)
- MI (Machine Interface, compile-time intermediate language)
- MIPS (for MIPS architecture) Microprocessor without Interlocked Pipeline Stages
- Motorolla 68k Assembly (for Motorola 68k ) Assembly Language for Motorolla 68k family of CPUs
- NASM (Netwide Assembler)
- NEAT (National's Electronic Autocoder Technique), for NCR computers, evolved into NEAT/3
- PAL-III (for DEC PDP-8)
- PASM (for Parrot virtual machine)
- RosAsm (32 bit Assembler; The Bottom Up Assembler)
- SC123 (for educational computer developed at CSU)
- Sphinx C-- (mixes Assembly commands with C-like structures)
- SSK (Sistema Simvolicheskogo Kodirovaniya, or "System of symbolic coding") for Minsk family of computers
- TASM (Turbo Assembler, Borland)
- YASM (Rewrite of NASM)
Command line interface languages
Command line interface (CLI) languages are also called batch languages, or job control languages. Examples:
These are languages typically processed by compilers, though theoretically any language can be compiled or interpreted. See also compiled language.
- Ada (multi-purpose language)
- ALGOL (extremely influential language design. The second high level language compiler.)
- BASIC (some dialects, including the first version of Dartmouth BASIC)
- C (one of the most widely-used procedural programming languages)
- C# (compiled into Intermediate Language which is used to generate a native image at runtime)
- CLEO (Clear Language for Expressing Orders) used the compiler for the British Leo computers
- CLush (Lush)
- Common Lisp
- Delphi (Borland's Object Pascal development system)
- DIBOL (Digital Interactive Business Oriented Language)
- eC (Ecere C)
- Eiffel (object-oriented language developed by Bertrand Meyer
- Forth (professional systems, like VFX and SwiftForth)
- Fortran (the first high level, compiled, language, from IBM, John Backus, et al)
- Java usually compiled into JVM bytecode although true native-code compiled versions exist)
- Nemerle (compiled into Intermediate Language bytecode)
- Pascal (most implementations)
- Scheme (some implementations, e.g. Gambit)
- Smalltalk generally compiled to platform independent bytecode that runs on a Virtual Machine.
- Visual Basic
- Visual Foxpro
- Visual Prolog
Message passing languages provide language constructs for concurrency. The predominant paradigm for concurrency in mainstream languages such as Java is shared memory concurrency based on monitors. Concurrent languages that make use of message passing have generally been inspired by CSP or the π-calculus, but have had little commercial success, except for Ada and Erlang. Ada is a multipurpose language and concurrent programming is only one option available.
- Ada (multi-purpose language)
- Afnix – concurrent access to data is protected automatically (previously called Aleph, but unrelated to Alef)
- Alef – concurrent language with threads and message passing, used for systems programming in early versions of Plan 9 from Bell Labs
- ChucK – domain specific programming language for audio, precise control over concurrency and timing
- Cilk – a concurrent C
- Cω – C Omega, a research language extending C#, uses asynchronous communication
- Concurrent Pascal (by Brinch-Hansen)
- E – uses promises, ensures deadlocks cannot occur
- Eiffel (through the SCOOP mechanism, Simple Concurrent Object-Oriented Computation)
- Erlang – uses asynchronous message passing with nothing shared
- Joule – dataflow language, communicates by message passing
- Limbo – relative of Alef, used for systems programming in Inferno (operating system)
- MultiLisp – Scheme variant extended to support parallelism
- occam – influenced heavily by Communicating Sequential Processes (CSP).
- Oz – multiparadigm language, supports shared-state and message-passing concurrency, and futures
- Pict – essentially an executable implementation of Milner's π-calculus
- SALSA – actor language with token-passing, join, and first-class continuations for distributed computing over the Internet
- SR – research language
The curly bracket programming languages have a syntax that defines statement blocks using the "curly bracket" or "brace" characters
}. All these languages descend from or are strongly influenced by C. Examples of curly-bracket languages include:
Dataflow programming languages rely on a (usually visual) representation of the flow of data to specify the program. Frequently used for reacting to discrete events or for processing streams of data. Examples of dataflow languages include:
Data-oriented languages provide powerful ways of searching and manipulating the relations that have been described as entity relationship tables which map one set of things into other sets. Examples of data-oriented languages include:
Data-structured languages are those where logic is structured in ways similar to their data. Such languages are generally well suited to reflection and introspection. There are three main types:
Assembly languages which statically link data inline with instructions can also be considered data-structured, in the most primitive way.
Declarative languages describe a problem rather than defining a solution. Declarative programming stands in contrast to imperative programming via imperative programming languages, where serial orders (imperatives) are given to a computer. In addition to the examples given just below, all (pure) functional and logic-based programming languages are also declarative. In fact, "functional" and "logical" constitute the usual subcategories of the declarative category.
An esoteric programming language is a programming language designed as a test of the boundaries of computer programming language design, as a proof of concept, or as a joke.
Extension programming languages are languages intended to be embedded into another program and used to harness its features in extension scripts.
Fourth-generation programming languages are high-level languages built around database systems. They are generally used in commercial environments.
Functional programming languages define programs and subroutines as mathematical functions. Many so-called functional languages are "impure", containing imperative features. Not surprisingly, many of these languages are tied to mathematical calculation tools. Functional languages include:
Interactive mode languages
Interactive mode languages act as a kind of shell: expressions or statements can be entered one at a time, and the result of their evaluation is seen immediately.
Interpreted languages are programming languages which programs may be executed from source code form, by an interpreter.
Iterative languages are built around or offering generators.
List-based languages – LISPs
List-based languages are a type of data-structured language that are based upon the list data structure.
Little languages serve a specialized problem domain.
- apply is a domain-specific language for image processing on parallel and conventional architectures
- awk can serve as a prototyping language for C, because the syntax is similar
- SQL has only a few keywords, and not all the constructs needed for a full programming language
Logic-based languages specify a set of attributes that a solution must have, rather than a set of steps to obtain a solution. Examples:
Machine languages are directly executable by a computer's CPU. They are typically formulated as bit patterns, usually represented in octal or hexadecimal. Each group of npatterns (often 1 or more bytes) causes the circuits in the CPU to execute one of the fundamental operations of the hardware. The activation of specific electrical inputs (eg, CPU package pins for microprocessors), and logical settings for CPU state values, control the processor's computation. Individual machine languages are processor specific and are not portable. They are (essentially) always defined by the CPU developer, not by 3rd parties. The symbolic version, the processor's assembly language, is also defined by the developer, in most cases. Since processors come in families which are based on a shared architecture, the same basic assembly language style can often be used for more than one CPU. Each of the following CPUs served as the basis for a family of processors:
Macro languages embed small pieces of executable code inside a piece of free-form text.
Metaprogramming is writing of programs that write or manipulate other programs (or themselves) as their data or that do part of the work that is otherwise done at run time during compile time. In many cases, this allows programmers to get more done in the same amount of time as they would take to write all the code manually.
Multiparadigm languages support more than one programming paradigm. They allow a program to use more than one programming style. The goal is to allow programmers to use the best tool for a job, admitting that no one paradigm solves all problems in the easiest or most efficient way.
- Ada (concurrent, distributed, generic (template metaprogramming), imperative, object-oriented (class-based))
- ALF (functional, logic)
- APL (functional, imperative)
- BETA (functional, imperative, object-oriented (class-based))
- C++ (generic, imperative, object-oriented (class-based))
- C# (generic, imperative, object-oriented (class-based), functional, declarative)
- ChucK (imperative, object-oriented, time-based, concurrent, on-the-fly)
- Common Lisp (functional, imperative, object-oriented (class-based), aspect-oriented (user may add further paradigms, e.g., logic))
- Corn (concurrent, generic, imperative, object-oriented (class-based))
- Curl (functional, imperative, object-oriented (class-based), metaprogramming)
- Curry (concurrent, functional, logic)
- D (generic, imperative, functional, object-oriented (class-based), metaprogramming)
- Dylan (functional, object-oriented (class-based))
- ECMAScript (functional, imperative, object-oriented (prototype-based))
- Eiffel (imperative, object-oriented (class-based), generic)
- Fan (functional, object-oriented (class-based))
- J (functional, imperative, object-oriented (class-based))
- LabVIEW (dataflow, visual)
- Lasso (macro, object-oriented (prototype-based), procedural, scripting)
- Lava (object-oriented (class-based), visual)
- Leda (functional, imperative, logic, object-oriented (class-based))
- Lua (functional, imperative, object-oriented (prototype-based))
- Metaobject protocols (object-oriented (class-based, prototype-based))
- Nemerle (functional, object-oriented (class-based), imperative, metaprogramming)
- Objective Caml (functional, imperative, object-oriented (class-based))
- Oz (functional (evaluation: eager, lazy), logic, constraint, imperative, object-oriented (class-based), concurrent, distributed)
- Object Pascal (imperative, object-oriented (class-based))
- Perl (imperative, functional (can't be purely functional), object-oriented, class-oriented, aspect-oriented (through modules))
- PHP (imperative, object-oriented)
- Pliant (functional, imperative, object-oriented (class-based))
- Poplog (functional, imperative, logic)
- ppC++ (imperative, object-oriented (class-based))
- Prograph (dataflow, object-oriented (class-based), visual)
- Python (functional, object-oriented (class-based))
- REBOL (functional, object-oriented (prototype-based))
- ROOP (imperative, logic, object-oriented (class-based), rule-based)
- Ruby (functional, object-oriented (class-based))
- Scala (functional, object-oriented)
- Seed7 (imperative, object-oriented, generic)
- SISAL (concurrent, dataflow, functional)
- Spreadsheets (functional, visual)
- Tcl (functional, imperative, object-oriented (class-based))
- Windows PowerShell (functional, imperative, pipeline, object-oriented (class-based))
- XL (concept programming approach)
Object-oriented class-based languages
Class-based Object-oriented programming languages support objects defined by their class. Class definitions include member data. Message passing is a key concept (if not the key concept) in Object-oriented languages.
Polymorphic functions parameterized by the class of some of their arguments are typically called methods. In languages with single dispatch, classes typically also include method definitions. In languages with multiple dispatch, methods are defined by generic functions. There are exceptions where single dispatch methods are generic functions (e.g. Bigloo's object system).
Object-oriented prototype-based languages
Prototype-based languages are object-oriented languages where the distinction between classes and instances have been removed:
Off-side rule languages
Off-side rule languages are those where blocks are formed, indicated, by their indentation.
Procedural programming languages are based on the concept of the unit and scope (the data viewing range of an executable code statement). A procedural program is composed of one or more units or modules, either user coded or provided in a code library; each module is composed of one or more procedures, also called a function, routine, subroutine, or method, depending on the language. Examples of procedural languages include:
Reflective languages let programs examine and possibly modify their high level structure at runtime. This is most common in high-level virtual machine programming languages like Smalltalk, and less common in lower-level programming languages like C. Languages and platforms supporting reflection:
Rule-based languages instantiate rules when activated by conditions in a set of data. Of all possible activations, some set will be selected and the statements belonging to those rules will be executed. Examples of rule-based languages include:
"Scripting language" has two apparently different, but in fact similar meanings. In a traditional sense, scripting languages are designed to automate frequently used tasks that usually involve calling or passing commands to external programs. Many complex application programs allow users to implement custom functions by providing them with built-in languages. Those which are of interpretive type, are often called scripting languages.
More recently many of these applications have chosen to "build in" traditional scripting languages, such as Perl or Visual Basic, but there are quite a few "native" scripting languages still in use. Many scripting languages are compiled to bytecode and then this (usually) platform independent bytecode is run through a virtual machine (compare to Java).
Stack-based languages are a type of data-structured language that are based upon the stack data structure.
Synchronous programming languages are optimized for programming reactive systems, systems that are often interrupted and must respond quickly. Many such systems are also called realtime systems, and are found often in embedded uses. Examples:
Syntax handling languages
These languages assist with generating lexical analzyers
for Context-free grammars
Visual programming languages let users specify programs in a two-(or more)-dimensional way, instead of as one-dimensional text strings, via graphic layouts of various types.
Some dataflow programming languages are also visual languages.
Computer scientist Niklaus Wirth designed and implemented several influential languages.
These are languages based on or that operate on XML. Although the big-boy equivalents of Oracle/PostgreSQL/MSSQL don't yet exist for XML, there are languages to navigate through it and its more tree-oriented structure.