At work I’m enhancing a Java test tool that needs to have scripting capability to run more dynamic tests, and to grade results on the fly.
So I’m considering which I should use. The users of the system are mostly Java and C++ developers on a Linux platform, so they’re used to the C style syntax but they mostly have at least a passing familiarity with shell scripting and makefiles, so they’ve seen about as convoluted a syntax as exists.
I’m considering Python and Ruby, as two languages that seem to be the favorites today, although their syntax would be unfamiliar to the typical user. they’re both object oriented. I don’t know what to suggest about the relative merits in this environment, but I can say that Google uses Python extensively, making it seem like a good choice. TCL is a third option, but I don’t know if it has the long term following the other languages have.
Right now Ruby is a language with much higher demand than the supply of developers, making it nice for the developer adding to her resume, but not for the company, necessarily.
Other programs on the site have added a home grown BASIC-like language to the tool, but home grown languages seem like a bad choice when there are so many known languages out there that you can actually hire someone who already knows it, and it enhances your resume if you’re looking for new work. In other words, a win-win.
Update 12:30 PM: found the Jakarta BSF project, which looks like a useful tool for this application.