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3.1 Language Translators by Mind Map: 3.1 Language Translators
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3.1 Language Translators

3.1.1 Define Syntax and Semantics



It is possible to write a syntactically correct statement that would be semantically wrong.

A computer can detect syntax errors. For example word processor checking spelling mistakes or a software compiler checking for syntax error. However, computers will never know the semantic meaning of what was written or programmed.

3.1.2 High-level language translators

2 types of computer languages

Hardware only runs on machine code, which is represented by the 1's and 0's of binary code. Electrical circuits and magnetic storage devices only recognize this code.

Also known as Assembly Language. Each line of an assembler program corresponds to one of the machine code. However, one High-level language statement usually translates into many machine code statements.



High-level vs Low-level

High level

Low level


What are they?

Process of compiling

Compiler needs to be loaded into memory. Compiled code usually executes faster than an interpreted version of the same program. Can be moved across computers, however, source code cannot and may need some changes to be made.

Compiler vs Interpreter: Interpreter analyzes and executes each line of source code in succession without looking at the entire program while a compiler creates a completely new program that is executed. It does not stop at the first error and just reports the errors.


Translated high-level instructions that can be directly executed one by one.

Compiled programs run faster than interpreted ones

Advantages is that the line of code being interpreted is executed straight away

Programmers normally have access to IDEs which integrate editor, to create source code, and debugger, to remove bugs.

Summary: Converts source code into object code that can be executed. Compiled code can be executed without the compiler. However, object code can't be modified but source code that runs in an interpreter can be viewed.

Compiling Java

Java has a separate compiler and library of modules everywhere the source code is to be turned into machine language

Java is 'compiled' to an intermediate stage (Java bytecodes), which are a tokenised/compressed version of the original code. This is passed to an interpreter, Java Virtual Manager (JVM), which is written for every platform Java is to run on.

Software Development Tools

Make the development of certain software easier.

HTML Editor


CASE Tools