It’s all about the Stack

By Doug Schaefer

Someone recently pointed me to a presentation that Tim Sweeney (Mr. Unreal engine) from Epic Games gave at POPL (Principles of Programming Languages) 2006.
The focus of the presentation was on "The Next Mainstream Programming
Language" where he discussed the challenges game developers have with
performance and quality and what the next generation language needs to
have to help with their problems. I truly believe game developers are
at the forefront of software engineering and have the heaviest
requirement set for IDEs. And that’s why I’m trying to figure out how
they work.

Tim’s slides talk about the technologies that went
into the game "Gears of War" and it’s a very interesting mix. While the
bulk of the code is C++, there is extensive use of scripting languages
as well. And, of course, most modern games make extensive use of
Shading languages to manipulate vertices and pixels using the almost
teraflop class GPUs we have today. So they could really benefit from an
IDE that did more than just C++ or more than just scripting while
integrating shader development into the fold.

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