Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

Script KATE to Automagically Compile/Execute Programs

Filed under
Software
HowTos


Script KATE to Automagically Compile/Execute Programs

By Gary Frankenbery



I teach high school computer science and programming, and I'm trying to transition my computer lab from MS-Windows only to MS-Windows/Linux dual boot.

For Computer Programming, my students first learn to program with Ruby. I try to keep it simple for these fledgeling programmers, so we have been using the Crimson Text Editor under Microsoft Windows to enter/edit the Ruby source code. The Crimson Text Editor makes it easy to configure a macro to execute whatever Ruby script is being edited: that is, the Crimson macro saves the file, then calls up the Ruby interpreter, and Ruby executes the script. Students accomplish this by simply by pressing the F5 function key while in the Crimson Text Editor.

So, I started wondering if I could configure the KDE Advanced Text Editor (KATE) under Linux to do the same thing with Ruby scripts? Yes, I know that KATE has an embedded terminal where one can activate the terminal window, click in it, and then type, for example,"ruby factorial.rb" and press the enter key, to execute the current Ruby script being edited in KATE. But, I wanted to have the current ruby script in the KATE editor to be both automatically saved, and then executed in a separate Konsole window, all triggered with the simple press of a shortcut key--just like Crimson under MS-Windows.

Could I do this? I've got at least one thing going against me--I'm not a bash shell programmer--I don't really know much shell scripting at all. However, I've got some things working for me--I am a programming teacher so I can program, bash scripting is well documented, and I can be very tenacious. So, I believe that with effort, persistance, and and lot of trial and error, I can figure out how to do this with KATE and Linux. And, so, I did. Then, I wanted to do more.

Since my more advanced computer programming students program use Java (not my personal choice--it's the language mandated by the College Board in the U.S.), I figured out how to configure KATE to automatically save and compile a Java program, and then I finally worked out a script to have KATE call up the Java Run Time Environment to execute the Java program. Obviously, other programming languages (Python comes to mind) can be accommodated as well by customizing these scripts (this, as teachers so often (annoyingly) say, is left as an exercise for the reader Smile).

KATE does permit you to embed scripts, so I'll display some KATE screenshots along the way, and explain how it's done. We'll start by configuring three scripts: Ruby Execute, Java Compile, and Java Execute.Then we'll look at how to configure shortcut keys to activate the scripts under KATE.

  1. With KATE on your screen, select Settings -> Configure Kate... from the
    menu.







  2. In the Configure Dialog box shown below, click External Tools in the left panel, then then click the New... button at the bottom.









  3. The Edit External Tool Dialog comes up (below). Here, we're going to configure KATE for Ruby Program Execution. Type in a description Label for the script (I used Ruby Execute). Then type in the script itself, with all the single apostrophes, double quotes, spaces, and symbols. Because this is tricky, you can copy the text on the next line, and paste it into the script box:


    cd "%directory" && konsole -e sh -c 'ruby "%filename"; printf "%s"
    "Press any key to exit . . . "; read $dummy'







    Since the KATE External Tool scripts like an executable name, just type konsole into the Executable: text box. Next, click the drop down list arrow by the
    Save: button, and select Current Document. Click the OK button. This window will
    close. Click OK again. You should now be back at the KATE main window.


  4. Now, let's configure the Java Compile script. Starting at the KATE main window, do steps 1 and 2 again. This time, edit the External Tool Dialog to look like the screen clip below. Again, the script code needs to be exact. Here it is so you can copy and paste, if necessary:



    cd "%directory" && konsole -e sh -c 'javac "%filename"; printf "%s" "Press any key to exit . . . "; read $dummy'








    Click the OK button, and at the next window, click OK again. You should be back at the KATE main window.

  5. Time to configure the last script to execute the Java program. At the KATE main window, do steps 1 and 2 above one more time. You should edit the External Tool Dialog to look like the clip below. Again, here's the scipt command which you can copy and paste:


    cd "%directory" &&  CF="%filename" konsole -e  sh -c 'java ${CF%.*}; printf  "%s" "Press any key to exit . . . "; read $dummy'








    Finally, we are done with the scripting part. Next we'll setup shortcut keys to launch our scripts.

  6. To get started, at the main KATE window, click the Settings->Configure Shortcuts menu choices as shown.








  7. You will see the Configure Shorcuts dialog box window shown below.



    Click the Java Compile script, click the button next to Custom (at the bottom), and press the key(s) you want to launch this script. You can see that I chose the F12 key to compile the current Java program. Click OK



    For the Java Execute script, I chose Shift-F12.




    For executing a Ruby program, I chose I chose Alt+R.



    So, after you configure the three shortcuts, you're done! You can now edit your programming source code in KATE, and quickly save, compile, and execute your Ruby and Java source code with these scripts simply by
    pressing the shortcut key(s).







Script Kate Article

By default, Debian derived Linux distros execute sh scripts using dash rather than bash. Because dash won't work correctly for the above Kate scripts, just substitute bash in place of sh in the above scripts.

Gary Frankenbery
January 4, 2009

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.

More in Tux Machines

Leftovers: Software

Leftovers: Gaming

Android Leftovers

  • Android Candy: Intercoms
    Ever since my "tiny $20 tablet" project (see my Open-Source Classroom column in the March 2015 issue), I've been looking for more and more cool things to do with cheap Android devices. Although the few obvious ones like XBMC or Plex remotes work well, I've recently found that having Android devices around the house means I can gain back an old-school ability that went out of style in the late 1980s—namely, an intercom system.
  • There's a wild prank hidden in Google Maps that insults Apple in the most childishly inappropriate way
    Rawalpindi is a vibrant Pakistani city known for its bazaars, ancient ruins, and array of religious shrines. But if you pay it a visit on Google Maps, you're going to notice something very unusual on the outskirts of the city — the Android "droid" mascot urinating on the Apple logo.
  • There's an Android bot peeing on an Apple logo on Google Maps
    Sick of all the Apple Watch news today? You're in luck, because we have something completely different for you. An image of an Android mascot, also known as an Android bot or Bugdroid, peeing on an Apple logo has been discovered on Google Maps.
  • An Android robot is peeing on an Apple logo in Google Maps
  • An Android is urinating on the Apple logo in Google Maps (update)
    Google and Apple have always had their differences, but a new Easter egg inside Google Maps has just taken their rivalry to a whole new level. As spotted by Team Android, if you head to these coordinates with the regular Map view enabled, you'll see Google's iconic Android mascot taking a leak on the Apple logo. At the moment, it's unclear who created this little piece of mischief and whether Google is taking action. But if this hidden message is any indication, it was snuck through by a member of the public using Google's Map Maker service, rather than a Google employee. Regardless, it's a crazy (and pretty hilarious) addition that's sure to rile some of the employees in Cupertino. Shots fired!
  • Sony's Android TV-powered 4K televisions are ridiculously thin
    Four models from Sony’s 2015 Android TV-powered 4K television range are now available for pre-order, with shipping to begin in May. The Japanese electronics giant unveiled its 4K TV lineup for 2015 at the Consumer Electronics Show in January, but kept pricing and release information to itself, only saying the new sets would be available sometime in the spring. Those details are finally here and the TVs themselves aren’t far off.
  • Android Wear v1.1 APK has Apple references in it, but when is iOS support coming?
    That Google is working on iOS support for Android Wear is nearly undeniable at this point, but even more evidence has surfaced in case you aren’t a believer. We peeked inside the latest Android Wear update APK to see what hidden bits were swarming about, and we came across some very interesting references.
  • 5 Things to Expect from the Nexus 5 Android 5.1.1 Release
    A few weeks ago, an Android 5.1.1 update mysteriously appeared alongside an update for Google’s Android SDK. Earlier this week, Google finally confirmed the Nexus Android 5.1.1 release with an update for its Nexus Player. With an Android 5.1.1 update now on the minds of Nexus users, particularly Nexus 5 users dealing with Android 5.0 Lollipop problems, we want to take a look at what we expect from the Nexus 5 Android 5.1 release from Google.

The Turing Phone Is Super Durable and Ultra Secure

The device also sports a 13MP/8MP camera combo, 64GB / 128GB of internal storage and runs Android 5.0 Lollipop out of the box. Read more