Language for working with data

Compact and dependency-free

compact fast secure

Transd (pronounced "trans-dee") is a statically typed, general purpose programming language with extended functionality for data processing. It uses a novel execution model - virtual compilation - which facilitates reductions in implementation size and gains in performance.

Albert Berger
author of Transd.

#lang transd

TypeAlias: { Lss: typealias(Lambda<String String>()) }

class Speaker : {
    say: Lss(),
    @init: (λ f Lss() (rebind say f )),
    call: (λ s String() (ret (exec say s)))

MainModule: {
    greeter: Lss(λ s String() (ret (+ "Hello, " s "!"))),

    _start: (λ 
        (with sp Speaker( greeter )
            (textout (call sp "World"))
    )   )
// Output: Hello, World!

Working with data

Transd is a general purpose language with extended capabilities for working with small to medium sized datasets of various types. These capabilities include:

  • Built-in data related datatypes such as Table, DataBase, etc.
  • Built-in data query language - TQL, - for performing database-like queries on data related types.
  • Transd Structured Data (TSD) data format provides for data interchange (e.g. direct converting text data into program objects), which resembles JSON, but with several essential enhancements.

Read more about processing data with Transd.


Easy embeddability of Transd is one of the design goals, and the language is made both small in physical size and easy to build on both platforms.

Building the Transd interpreter TREE3 on Linux:

$ cd transd/tree3/src
$ g++ -O3 -std=c++14 transd.cpp main.cpp -D__LINUX__ -DNDEBUG -lpthread -o tree3
$ ls --size --human-readable
total 3.3M
8.0K main.cpp  504K transd.cpp  182K transd.hpp  2.5M tree3
$ ./tree3
_) (textout "Hello, Transd!")
Hello, Transd!

The whole language compiles on Windows and Linux with Clang, without any prerequisites, using, basically, the same command:


$ clang++ -std=c++14 -O3 -D__LINUX__ -DNDEBUG transd.cpp main.cpp -lpthread -o tree3


PS clang++ -std=c++14 -O3 -DWIN32 -DNDEBUG transd.cpp main.cpp -o tree3.exe

Quick Survey of Transd Programming Language

What tasks can Transd solve?

Extending the functionality of programs, processing data in various formats, general programming/scripting, etc.

How Transd is used?

Transd can be integrated into a program as a two-file C++ library or can be bundled as a small executable file.

Why Transd?

Transd is a full-fledged programming language with many advanced features. It's cross-platform, fast, and very compact.

Examples of use cases for Transd

Text data processing

Transd out of the box can work with structured or semi-structured text data (CSV tables, JSON-like objects, etc.).

Moderately large data sets can be processed with Transd using a very small amount of code. A program consisting of several lines can read a 'CSV' file, or other data, into memory and perform data queries on it, similar to SQL queries.

An example fully working program:

#lang transd

MainModule: {
    tabfile: "/mnt/data/employees.csv",
    tabstr: "",

    _start: (λ 
//-- Read a CSV file into a string --
        (with fs FileStream()
            (open fs tabfile) (textin tabstr fs))

        (with tabl Table()
//-- Load table and build indexes --
            (load-table tabl tabstr)
            (build-index tabl "Age in Company (Years)")
            (build-index tabl "Salary")

//-- Do a SELECT query
            (with rows (tsd-query tabl 
                    select: ["Name Prefix", "First Name", "Last Name",
                             "Age in Company (Years)", "Salary"]
                    as: [[String(),String(),String(),Double(),Int()]]
                    where: "\"Age in Company (Years)\" > 35.0 AND 
                        Salary < 43000"
                    sortby: "Salary")
//-- Print result
                (for row in rows do (lout row)))


[Drs., Cameron, Diggs, 36.35, 40119]
[Mr., Cory, Coyle, 37.62, 41078]
[Mr., Carol, Vangundy, 36.59, 41724]
[Mrs., Kristi, Beliveau, 38.39, 41796]
[Ms., Particia, Blair, 35.06, 41819]
[Mr., Wilber, Ransome, 37.67, 41994]
[Ms., Cathern, Pettit, 36.36, 42453]
[Mr., Lamar, Parson, 35.41, 42458]

 table loading: 20.41 sec;
 running query: 0.006 sec.

This program reads a 37 column table with 100,000 rows of sample data and makes a SELECT query on it.

You can run this example by following instructions here.

Cross-platform scripting language

Transd can be used as a bundled/embedded cross-platform general-purpose programming language for performing various programming tasks in cases when other solutions are too big, or not cross-platform, etc.

An example of using Transd as a cross-platform general purpose language is a Transd interpreter: TREE3. The size of its executable on Windows is less than 3 Mb, on Linux - less than 5 Mb (statically linked).

Handling an advanced configuration

Cases of complex configuration may include definition of custom user classes, using types, variables and expressions in config files, and definition of custom user functions that can be executed by Transd.

Complex configuration is handled by associating with configuration files a custom handler, written in Transd. The amount of code in such handler usually is considerably less, than in one written on the program's native language, thanks to the built-in support of the format in which config files are written ("Transd Structured Data" (TSD) format).

An example of handling a moderately complex configuration can be seen in a demonstration program.

Extending the program's functionality

Transd can be used for creating a library of user-defined functions, extensions, add-ons, plugins.

With Transd as an extension language, the user is able to write their own functions from scratch or download a third party's add-on and run it either via interpreter, or internally, in case if Transd is included in the program as a C++ library.

An example of extending a graphics program with a rendering function written in Transd can be found here.

Handling a simple configuration file

Programs requiring simple configuration can use Transd for processing config files with minimum of coding. The configuration file(s) for such program can be organized in the form of named sections with lists of name/value items:

network : {
    siteName: "localhost",
    requestPassword: true

users : {
    usernames: ["alice", "bob", "tom"],
    userquotas: [35, 35, 30]

Such format has built-in support in Transd and can be processed with almost no customization. Values in name/value pairs can be strings, integers, floats, booleans, and lists of these. Transd reads and validates configuration files and returns the processed results via C++ API or standard output.