The Clay programming language
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stepancheg Merge pull request #497 from igauravsehrawat/master
changed README extension from txt to md , so that i could display markdown on github
Latest commit db0bd27 Oct 29, 2014

Clay 0.2-WIP

Clay is a programming language designed for Generic Programming.

Visit for more information.

This is a work-in-progress branch. Documentation may be out of date, and source code compatibility may break at any time. The latest release branch is v0.1; for normal use you will want to switch to that branch:

git checkout v0.1


Clay requires CMake version 2.6 or later, and LLVM and Clang 3.2. Note that LLVM versions are not backward-compatible so developer versions of LLVM and/or later releases are not compatible with this version of Clay.

CMake Configuration

Clay uses CMake to configure and control its build system. The build can be customized by passing cmake arguments of the form "-D=" to set CMake variables. In addition to standard CMake variables such as CMAKE_INSTALL_PREFIX and CMAKE_BUILD_TYPE, Clay's build system uses the following variables:

  • LLVM_DIR can be set to the install prefix of an LLVM 3.2 installation. If not set, CMake will look for an 'llvm-config' script on the PATH.
  • PYTHON_EXECUTABLE can be set to the path of a Python 2.x interpreter. Clay uses a Python 2 script to drive its test suite. Some platforms (notably Arch Linux) use Python 3 as their 'python' executable, and this will confuse CMake. Pointing PYTHON_EXECUTABLE at 'python2' may be necessary on these platforms.

Build Clay on Unix-like Systems

To build Clay, first run cmake to generate the Makefiles and then run make. CMake can also build project files for IDEs such as Xcode. Look at CMake documentation for how to build those. It is recommended that Clay be built in a separate build directory.

mkdir build
cd build
cmake -G "Unix Makefiles" ../

The default installation directory for Clay is /usr/local. To change the installation path, pass -DCMAKE_INSTALL_PREFIX=/my/path to cmake.

To install Clay run

make install

To run the test suite

make test

To compile a clay source file run

clay ../examples/hello.clay

The generated binary


Build Clay on Windows with Visual C++

I use Visual C++ Express 2010 to build LLVM and Clay for Windows. From a Visual Studio command prompt, build LLVM and Clang using cmake and the MSVC compiler. There are some issues with Debug builds and LLVM, so both LLVM and Clay will need to be built as Release. The default LLVM install directory needs Administrator permissions, so you may want to set a CMAKE_INSTALL_PREFIX as well. to change it. Place the Clang repository in llvm-3.2/tools/clang so that LLVM builds it automatically and compile LLVM with the following commands:

mkdir build
cd build
cmake -G "NMake Makefiles" -DCMAKE_INSTALL_PREFIX=c:\llvm31-install -DCMAKE_BUILD_TYPE=Release ..
nmake install

Then to build Clay, run CMake and generate nmake makefiles:

mkdir build
cd build
cmake -G "NMake Makefiles" -DLLVM_DIR=c:\llvm31-install -DCMAKE_BUILD_TYPE=Release ..

Building under Cygwin or Mingw, or with Visual C++ using cmake's Visual Studio Solution generator, may also work, but I haven't tried it.