You should be able to:

  • explain the difference between high level code and machine code
High level code
Human oriented code / written by programmers
Contains words for commands / closer to English/natural language
Needs to be translated before it can be executed
Problem based
One (high level) command equates to many machine code instructions
Machine code
Code for the CPU to execute and not readily understandable by humans
Binary instructions
Specific to a particular (type of) computer / not portable to different systems
Does not need to be translated
  • explain the need for translators to convert high level code to machine code
  • describe the characteristics of an assembler, a compiler and an interpreter (HELPFUL LINK)
Assembler
Translates assembly language into machine code
Assembly language is a low level language
Compiler
To convert to low level in one go
Creates an executable/exported file
This is used to distribute the software
Users will have no access to source code..so no one can edit/steal/copy the code/program
Use for error detection
Interpreter
To convert to low level line by line
To test the program to find errors
Stops running when it finds an error and shows the location of
the error when found
It is quicker (compared to compiler)
  • describe common tools and facilities available in an integrated development environment (IDE): editors, error diagnostics, run-time environment, translators, auto-documentation
Facilities of an IDE available to help programmers are shown below. Think about the tools available in VB to help you when programming;
-Editor: Allows programmer to enter the program code
-Colour coding keywords
-Auto-completes code as you type
-Compiler
-Transforms the written source code into machine code
-Debugging tools
-Highlights errors in the code
-Suggests possible solutions