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The ABS programming language

ABS is a programming language that works best when you're scripting on your terminal. It tries to combine the elegance of languages such as Python, or Ruby with the convenience of Bash.

tz = `cat /etc/timezone`
continent, city = tz.split("/")

echo("Best city in the world?")

selection = stdin()

if selection == city {
  echo("You might be biased...")

See it in action:


Let's try to fetch our IP address and print the sum of its parts if it's higher than 100. Here's how you do it in Bash:

# Simple program that fetches your IP and sums it up
RES=$(curl -s '' || "ERR")

if [ "$RES" = "ERR" ]; then
    echo "An error occurred"
    exit 1

IP=$(echo $RES | jq -r ".ip")
IFS=. read first second third fourth <<EOF

total=$((first + second + third + fourth))
if [ $total -gt 100 ]; then
    echo "The sum of [$IP] is a large number, $total."

And here's the same code in ABS:

# Simple program that fetches your IP and sums it up
res = `curl -s ''`

if !res.ok {
  echo("An error occurred: %s", res)

ip = res.json().ip
total = ip.split(".").map(int).sum()
if total > 100 {
    echo("The sum of [$ip] is a large number, $total.")

Wondering how to run this code? Grab the latest release and run:

$ abs script.abs


The easiest way is to:

bash <(curl

then you can:

$ abs path/to/scripts.abs


Visit or check the examples directory, which contains a few short scripts.


Want to hack on ABS locally? The recommended development environment is inside a Docker container — simply:

  • make build (builds the container)
  • make run (sends you inside the development container)
  • make test (runs the abs tests)

After you make any change, run make test and check if any errors pop up. If everything looks fine that means you're ready to open a pull request!


ABS is fresh and under active development; exciting things happen on a weekly basis!

Have a look at the roadmap here: to know of what version we're currently working on take a look at