Virtual Lunch & Learn: How to Make a Programming Language

The Atlanta JavaScript Meetup Group
The Atlanta JavaScript Meetup Group
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Hello JS'ers! This month on a Friday, Toby Ho shall present a Virtual Lunch & Learn: How to Make a Programming Language.

Have you ever wondered how a programming language is made?

Come see for yourself. In this talk, you'll be treated to an overview of the different parts that a typical programming language is made out of.
Furthermore, you'll see a new language invented right in front of your eyes.

The first part of this talk will give an overview of the 3 or 4 architectures you'd find in a programming language, whether it is a statically-typed language like TypeScript or Java, or a dynamic language like JavaScript
or Python.

The second part of the talk will be a live coding session to create a minimal programming language. The language will be implemented from scratch using JavaScript, with the help of a parser generator tool called nearley.js. For simplicity, the compiler to be written will transpile the source code to JavaScript to be executed in Node.js. There will be time dedicated to explaining parsing and grammars, abstract syntax trees, and code generation.

Diagrams will be drawn. Code will be written. At the end of the demo, time permitting, we will attempt to implement the fibonacci sequence in the language we've created.

Toby works as a software mentor. He helps young developers level up in their careers. He has been teaching people how make their own languages online as a video series. You can find out more at