Technical Overview

Linear Procedural Grammar Specification

Backus-Naur Form has, for many years, been the standard for specifying grammars. Those familiar with the ADA language are quite familiar with BNF. In 1996, a joint committee of the International Standards Organization (ISO) and the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) published the Extended BNF Standard 14977:1996(E). In the Committees own words:

"Extended BNF brings some order to the formal definition of a syntax and will be useful not just for the definition of programming languages, but for many other formal definitions."

While that is certainly true, it does not help you to implement a grammar specification. The task of creating a language parser/compiler from such a specification is not trivial.

The EBNF 4.0 application is an implementation of the Extended BNF Standard. When a grammar, whether simple or complex, is specified using EBNF 4.0 the resulting specification is the code. That is to say that all of the parsing and source file text management tasks are completely coded and ready to go. Typically, this amounts to about 80 to 90 percent of the coding work.

EBNF 4.0 was implemented in FORTH using Win32Forth Version 6.12.00 Build 2. The development platform is a Toshiba Satellite and Vista Home Premium 32 bit OS. Win32Forth is free and quite easy to install. It will, I believe, run on any Windows Operating System from Windows 98 through Vista.

For more information about EBNF 4.0, see the pages listed in the upper left panel.  Examples of applications written with EBNF 4.0 are listed at the Flippin Engineering Portal.


 New Technical Data April 2014





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