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Factor was a big name in 'modern stack-based languages,' but of course it's pretty dynamic. I gave Factor a couple of dives a few years ago (after walking through jonesforth prior) and it felt surprisingly complete/mature (except for lack of package manager, of course).

Given its novelty, I think it'd be lovely if Kitten took a page from some other languages and had a "QuickStart" or "Crash Course" that consisted of side-by-side examples comparing Kitten to Forth or Factor, or even some other more common language like Javascript. (Ie, elixir-lang does this comparison with Erlang on its website, and it can be helpful).




Factor has been a good source of inspiration when designing Kitten, and I would recommend it to people who want to try a concatenative language now. Kitten is not usable for real-world stuff yet—but it’s getting close, and eventually it should be a good alternative to Factor for those of us in the static-types camp.

I’m working on an updated tutorial, and I’ll definitely include some comparisons to other languages that people are likely to know, say JavaScript and C. But I still need to find the right balance between illustrative comparisons and standalone descriptions.


I like the concept of Factor and talked to the author awhile back who isn't actively involved anymore. My problem comes from the confusing doc and lack of beginner materials. Just because I can write a simple app in an imperative or OO context doesn't mean I can write functional nevermind efficient concatenative code without help.


I do hang out with Slava occasionally, and he’s been helpful even if he’s not that into concatenative programming anymore. For better or worse, the current Factor maintainers are focused more on language internals than onboarding new users. Concatenative/compositional programming does require a different way of thinking, which I think is easy to learn but hard to teach.


Understood. Is concatenative programming not especially good for what he is currently interested in?


Last I heard, Slava was working on the Linux kernel at Google.


He’s working on the Swift compiler at Apple these days.


That's pretty prestigious.




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