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OpenEdge Getting Started: Progress OpenEdge Studio
Preface : Using this manual
 
Using this manual
This document assumes that you have successfully installed the OpenEdge Studio. The information in it is designed to acquaint you with the fundamental tools and techniques for working with ABL in the OpenEdge Studio. The exercises in Chapter 3, “Assembling the Order Tracking System,” are arranged in three sections: an overview of the techniques needed to complete the exercise, an abbreviated procedures for those who want to try the exercise with minimal direction, and a more detailed procedure for more help.
OpenEdge provides a special purpose programming language for building business applications. In the documentation, the formal name for this language is ABL (Advanced Business Language). With few exceptions, all keywords of the language appear in all UPPERCASE, using a font that is appropriate to the context. All other alphabetic language content appears in mixed case.
For the latest documentation updates see the OpenEdge Product Documentation category on PSDN http://www.psdn.com/library/kbcategory.jspa?categoryID=129.
References to ABL compiler and run-time features
ABL is both a compiled and interpreted language that executes in a run-time engine that the documentation refers to as the ABL Virtual Machine (AVM). When documentation refers to ABL source code compilation, it specifies ABL or the compiler as the actor that manages compile-time features of the language. When documentation refers to run-time behavior in an executing ABL program, it specifies the AVM as the actor that manages the specified run-time behavior in the program.
For example, these sentences refer to the ABL compiler’s allowance for parameter passing and the AVM’s possible response to that parameter passing at run time: “ABL allows you to pass a dynamic temp-table handle as a static temp-table parameter of a method. However, if at run time the passed dynamic temp-table schema does not match the schema of the static temp-table parameter, the AVM raises an error.” The following sentence refers to run-time actions that the AVM can perform using a particular ABL feature: “The ABL socket object handle allows the AVM to connect with other ABL and non-ABL sessions using TCP/IP sockets.”
References to ABL data types
ABL provides built-in data types, pre-defined class data types, and user-defined class data types. References to built-in data types follow these rules:
*Like most other keywords, references to specific built-in data types appear in all UPPERCASE, using a font that is appropriate to the context. No uppercase reference ever includes or implies any data type other than itself.
*Wherever integer appears, this is a reference to the INTEGER or INT64 data type.
*Wherever decimal appears, this is a reference to the DECIMAL data type.
*Wherever numeric appears, this is a reference to the INTEGER, INT64, or DECIMAL data type.
References to pre-defined class data types appear in mixed case with initial caps, for example, Progress.Lang.Object. References to user-defined class data types appear in mixed case, as specified for a given application example.