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Engineering LibreTexts

11.7: Glossary

  • Page ID
    16871
  • problem solving:
    The process of formulating a problem, finding a solution, and expressing the solution.
    high-level language:
    A programming language like Python that is designed to be easy for humans to read and write.
    low-level language:
    A programming language that is designed to be easy for a computer to execute; also called “machine language” or “assembly language.”
    portability:
    A property of a program that can run on more than one kind of computer.
    interpret:
    To execute a program in a high-level language by translating it one line at a time.
    compile:
    To translate a program written in a high-level language into a low-level language all at once, in preparation for later execution.
    source code:
    A program in a high-level language before being compiled.
    object code:
    The output of the compiler after it translates the program.
    executable:
    Another name for object code that is ready to be executed.
    prompt:
    Characters displayed by the interpreter to indicate that it is ready to take input from the user.
    script:
    A program stored in a file (usually one that will be interpreted).
    interactive mode:
    A way of using the Python interpreter by typing commands and expressions at the prompt.
    script mode:
    A way of using the Python interpreter to read and execute statements in a script.
    program:
    A set of instructions that specifies a computation.
    algorithm:
    A general process for solving a category of problems.
    bug:
    An error in a program.
    debugging:
    The process of finding and removing any of the three kinds of programming errors.
    syntax:
    The structure of a program.
    syntax error:
    An error in a program that makes it impossible to parse (and therefore impossible to interpret).
    exception:
    An error that is detected while the program is running.
    semantics:
    The meaning of a program.
    semantic error:
    An error in a program that makes it do something other than what the programmer intended.
    natural language:
    Any one of the languages that people speak that evolved naturally.
    formal language:
    Any one of the languages that people have designed for specific purposes, such as representing mathematical ideas or computer programs; all programming languages are formal languages.
    token:
    One of the basic elements of the syntactic structure of a program, analogous to a word in a natural language.
    parse:
    To examine a program and analyze the syntactic structure.
    print statement:
    An instruction that causes the Python interpreter to display a value on the screen.
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