Hi. By high level, I mean Basic, Pascal, C, etc. and by Modern I mean languages developed since the 1980's.
I'm not interested in assembler. I don't have the mindset to develop at that level. It's too much like the art form of composing a picture using seeds. You can do amazing things with it, but it just seems tedious to me.
I know about all the older software like Turbo Basic XL and Action!. They are both great and I've used them both, but i want to hear about what has been happening in the years since I left the scene.
I've heard about Fast Basic, but real information on the language seems hard to find. Is there a Github or a website with documentation on this language?
What is Mads Pascal. I've seen the website and it is very reasonable to read in translation, but it seems to assume you know some basics about the system that are not obvious to me...like does this actually run on the Atari or is it a Windows-based development system that targets the Atari?
What else is out there?
I'm also interested in some of the older languages that I was never able to get my hands on BITD. I've tried the APX Atari Pascal, and I vaguely remember Kyan Pascal, but they both seem to suffer from being a closed system like many Pascals back then. They were an ecosystem that your compiled code had to live within and they couldn't produce a native executable, more like a P-Code that had to be executed in the Pascal Monitor. Because of this performance suffers and seems to run as slowly as Atari Basic...or slower! Maybe CLSN Pascal is better but I haven't had time to dig in yet.
Older versions of C like Deep Blue C or C65 seem to be either lost to the sands of time, or I've heard that they were buggy. I can't find the images on Atarimania for C65, if anyone knows where to find a copy, I'd appreciate a link.
I don't mind hearing about Windows based tools like WUDSN, but again. not a fan of assembler.
One reason I'm interested in doing this is an idea I had to benchmark the various languages running a familiar demo, the "HAT" sine program from a very early ANALOG issue. This program is only a dozen lines or so, but takes nearly 3 hours to run in Atari Basic. The finished image was pretty iconic for the A8 and it appeared in advertising and magazine covers. I translated it to C64 basic (which was a pain without graphic commands) and discovered that the program appears to have been designed for a 320x200 pixel display.. The TRAP statement catches any excursions beyond the bottom of the Atari hi-res screen and wasn't necessary (or even possible) in C64 Basic. The end result on the C64 looks pretty much the same as on the Atari if you ignore the fact that I had to remove the Drawto(X,Y) statement that cleans up any obscured points. I had enough trouble writing a "Plot(X,Y) subroutine.
I did not have an actual C64 to test the program on, but the emulator ran the program nearly as fast (or slow) as on the Atari emulator. If I'd taken the time to implement the Drawto in Basic code, it probably would have crawled.