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I think this book suits your situation and I've been into that!

Compiler Construction Using Java, JavaCC, and Yacc, IEEE/Wiley, 2012

Get this book. Please. __I promise__. You'll be able to grok compilers after reading and answering the exercises from this book.

We can talk further by sending me an email (see my profile).

Here's my previous comment somewhere in HN:

I bet this is what you are looking for: https://www.amazon.com/Compiler-Construction-Using-Java-Java....

This book taught me how to write a compiler and build a programming language of my own.

To answer you question "where and how did you start?": This is where I started learning about compilers and programming language implementation.

Here is its description from its website:

* Comprehensive treatment of compiler construction.

* JavaCC and Yacc coverage optional.

* Entire book is Java oriented.

* Powerful software package available to students that tests and evaluates their compilers.

* Fully defines many projects so students can learn how to put the theory into practice.

* Includes supplements on theory so that the book can be used in a course that combines compiler construction with formal languages, automata theory, and computability theory.

What I promise you with this book: You'll learn how to write your own programing language. Not only how compilers and about the language but also about computer architecture. This book is very easy to read and understand. It starts with very basic topics then slowly building from it until you'll grok implementing the language given the specification. You'll have the chance to build a compiler from scratch or by using JavaCC and Yacc.




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