Past Meetup

Steffen Zschaler presents "Language workbenches: Better DSLs more quickly"

This Meetup is past

52 people went

Droit Fintech - The Office Group

2 Riding House Street · London

How to find us (Closest tube is Oxford Circus). More details on the venue here:

Location image of event venue


Steffen Zschaler ( , presents a talk titled

"Language workbenches: Better domain-specific languages more quickly"

Inspired by "Language workbenches" by Martin Fowler ( and "Evaluating and comparing language workbenches: Existing results and benchmarks for the future" by Erdweg and others (available at


Domain-specific or "little" languages have a long history. We all use them, but rarely think about designing our own, even though there are clear and well-demonstrated benefits. The main reason is that building good domain-specific languages and, in particular, good tools and infrastructure for them, is difficult, costly, tedious, and often doesn’t immediately result in a product you can sell. Language workbenches fundamentally alter these trade-offs: By leveraging strong language-engineering and automated-generation techniques, they can make it easy and fun to produce new domain-specific languages and sophisticated support infrastructure for them. This finally makes it possible to develop domain-specific languages that work for end users rather than for programmers. In this talk, we use two articles on language workbenches to explore this exciting space. We will look at the core underlying principles of language workbenches and, through brief demonstrations, look at examples of three fundamentally different types of language workbenches.

The Speaker

Steffen Zschaler is a senior lecturer in computer science at King’s College London. He has a Dipl-Inf. degree and a Dr. rer. nat. from Technische Universität Dresden, Germany. His research has focused on modelling software systems through higher-level, domain-specific languages, and in particular on the development of foundational theory and generic tooling to support the development of such languages. More recently, his research focus has specifically been on issues of modularity and reuse in language design and on high-level descriptions and tooling for optimisation problems. Steffen is always on the lookout for interesting applications of these techniques and collaborations with industrial partners.


Location: Droit Fintech - The Office Group - Henry Wood House, 2 Riding House Street W1W 7FA (

Map: . The nearest tube station is Oxford Circus. The schedule:

• 6.30pm: pizza and drinks (Kindly sponsored by Droit Fintech
• 7:00pm: presentation starts
• 8:00pm: presentation end

Meetup are captured on video and uploaded on the PWL London Youtube channel