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In article <H00019f0088ba98c / MHS>,
 <christopher.j.meisenzahl / citicorp.com> wrote:
>I've just started playing w/ Ruby and like it quite a bit so far.

- - Caution: My TCL knowledge is way out of date, I haven't really
  looked at it closely since about 1995 or so... ( But I am in the
  FAQ... )

>
>But I was wondering, I know that TCL/TK has a large following out there. Is 
>anyone here a convert from TCL/TK to Ruby? If so, why? What do you consider the 
>relative advantages/disadvantages of each?

- - TCL would be great if people used it for what it was designed
  for, a "Tool Command Language". As an embeddable language I
  thought it was great, and while TK is showing it's age in
  1993 it was quite a step ahead of other available X toolkits.
  I found TCL to be somewhat painful as a general purpose
  scripting language. I think you can sum up the difference
  in the two languages as follows: 

  In TCL everything is a string. 

  In Ruby everything is a object.


>
>Is it a fair comparison?
>

- - IMHO, not really. One was designed to be imbedded from day One
  and the other is designed to be object-oriented from day One. 
  They each make different compromises in design. If I were
  looking at embedding a scripting language in my application,
  I would not put Ruby at the top of my list[1], but I think
  TCL still compares favorably with things like Lua. Contrarily,
  TCL would probably be my last choice to write a pure scripting
  tool in these days. I think TCL's popularity is basically
  down to two things:

1. It was there "fastest with the mostest". In the early '90's
   there was no scripting language with anywhere as near as 
   good an Xwindows interface and toolkit. Add expect into the
   mix and you have a very powerful tool. 

2. It was not perl. There were people that detested perl from 
   the very first. 

>
>Can GUI apps be created with Ruby as easily as with TCL/TK?
>

- - IMHO it's easier in Ruby, getting documentation on the Ruby Tk
  interface is the hardest part. But, there are plenty of other
  Ruby GUI interfaces and some of then are even documented %-). 

- - Booker C. Bense 

[1]- Not at least the current ruby implementation. 

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