What is an interpreter in computer | advantages and disadvantages of interpreter

An interpreter is a program or software component that translates and executes instructions written in a high-level programming language directly into machine code or intermediate code. Unlike a compiler, which translates the entire program into machine code before execution, an interpreter performs this translation and execution line by line or statement by statement.
When you run a program using an interpreter, it reads each line of the source code, translates it into machine code or intermediate code, and immediately executes it. If there is an error in the code, the interpreter stops execution and reports the error message, pointing out the specific line where the error occurred.
Interpreters are commonly used in scripting languages such as Python, Ruby, and JavaScript, where they provide an interactive and dynamic programming environment. They allow developers to write and execute code quickly without the need for explicit compilation steps. However, due to the immediate translation and execution processes, interpreted programs often have slower performance compared to compiled programs.
In addition to executing programs, interpreters also provide other features such as interactive shells, debugging capabilities, and dynamic typing. They are often used for rapid prototyping, scripting, and situations where ease of development and flexibility are more important than raw execution speed.

What Does Interpreter Mean?

A computer program known as an interpreter is used to execute program instructions created in one of the numerous high-level programming languages directly. The high-level program is converted into an intermediate language by the interpreter, which then executes it.
Alternatively, the interpreter may read the high-level source code and carry out the commands directly, either line by line or statement by statement.

What is an interpreter?

The translator program that translates the program's source code written in high-level language line by line into machine language corrects any mistakes, and works on the following line is called an interpreter. When a line is finished executing, the interpreter similarly moves to the next line of the source program and translates it into machine language.

The compiler converts the source program directly into machine language and executes it. And so the interpreter acts as a medium between the CPU and the source program to run the source program. BASIC and LISP programs are designed to convert their source code into machine language that requires an Internet-based interpreter. The interpreter allows the program to be viewed and modified while being executed or run.

What are the advantages of having interpreters?

  • The interpreter is more user-friendly.
  • Translated object programs do not need to be stored in memory.
  • Interpreters are usually used on small computers.
  • As the interpreter is small in size, it consumes less memory.

Disadvantages of the interpreter?

  • Program execution takes 5 to 25 times longer than the compiler.
  • Each time the program has to be executed, the program instructions have to be translated one after the other.
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