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Links App Work

I'm working on a demo app in Links, our language for web development. It's stimulating me to see lots of things wrong with the language and the implementation, and things that need to be done to make it work really well. I'll note some here; we need:

  • a way to perform redirections. We should, of course, allow redirections to go to Links "continuations" but also to arbitrary URLs. I've got an inkling that the type of continuations should be precisely the same as the type of URLs, or that there should be an easy conversion.
  • a way to load code from other files. I'm already copying and pasting code between different files.
  • call a subroutine which never returns to the caller, but which knows who the caller is & can return on some later request.
  • more helpful error messages
  • error messages that tell you what line the problem occured in
  • a way to freeze an expression so that it will be evaluated when a link is clicked

The above things are fairly desparate; without them we can't prove that Links is good for the web. Lower-priority needs:

  • Ability to interpolate code in {...} with regular old "strings" (why should XML quasiquotes be special?)
  • Ability to send error messages to the browser (exceptions rule)

(Links team at Edinburgh: try this)


a way to load code from other files

We have this one, at least:

 # import a module from a file URL.  Call it "foo".
 namespace foo = "file://..."
 # now use a name from the module:
Ability to send error messages to the browser (exceptions rule)

This one used to work. It shouldn't take much to get it going again.

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