Small Basic Compiler

Microsoft Small Basic

Microsoft Small Basic is a high-level programming language. Here’s an example of a Small Basic program that computes the area of a rectangle with a length of 5 units and a width of 7 units:

length = 5

width = 7

area = length * width ' Computes the area

TextWindow.WriteLine(area) ' Displays the answer


The four lines above are called the source code. A special program, called a compiler, reads this source code, checks it for spelling and grammar errors (called syntax errors), and converts it into machine language (the 0s and 1s). This process is known as compilation. The compiler creates an executable file called a program. On the Windows platform, this file has a [.exe] file extension. The Figure illustrates the compilation process.


Figure: The compiler converting the source code into an executable

Small Basic is a modern programming language that can be traced back to another programming language (called BASIC) that was very popular in the seventies and eighties. Head to Where Computers Came From to read a brief history of computers and to Where Did BASIC Come From? to get a history of BASIC, Small Basic’s grandparent!

Go to to download Small Basic for free and learn all about it!   


Small and Basically yours,

   - Ninja Ed & Majed Marji