This 4-day course teaches a basic understanding of the Transaction Application Language (TAL) and its usage. Through a series of exercises and labs, students will gain sufficient understanding of syntax and operations to develop and maintain TAL and pTAL programs.

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  • Concepts and Facilities course

Recommended: At least six months of programming experience, preferably with C, PASCAL, or other block-structured procedure based languages. Alternatively, one year of COBOL 85 programming experience


Systems programmers or maintainers who want to become proficient TAL or pTAL programmers.

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Delegates will learn how to

  • Introduction to TAL/pTAL
  • Program organization and general syntax
  • Simple data types and arrays
  • Data transfer, program control, and data scan statements
  • Operators and expressions
  • Pointers and addressing
  • Procedures and subprocedures
  • The Common Run-Time Environment; Interfacing C and TAL
  • Building native mode programs
  • Debugging with the Inspect tool

Benefits to you

  • Introduction to TAL/pTAL
  • Program organization and general syntax
  • Simple data types and arrays
  • Data transfer, program control, and data scan statements
  • Operators and expressions
  • Pointers and addressing
  • Procedures and subprocedures
  • The Common Run-Time Environment; Interfacing C and TAL
  • Building native mode programs
  • Debugging with the Inspect tool
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Introduction to TAL/pTAL

  • Introduce the Tandem Transaction Application Language (TAL and pTAL)
  • Describe TAL/pTAL programming in the Guardian environment
  • Describe tools to assist the developer in writing and debugging TAL and pTAL programs

Program organization and general syntax

  • Discuss basic syntax and organization of TAL programs
  • Discuss identifiers, begin-end blocks, constants, operators, variable declarations, and procedure declarations.
  • Describe compiler (both TAL and pTAL) directives that control listings
  • Describe sourcing from another file
  • Explain the environment set up for the Inspect product and compile for syntax only
  • Demonstrate basic Inspect software commands

Simple data types and arrays program flow statements

  • Describe how data is stored and what facilities TAL provides to access data
  • Discuss correct data types for various purposes, definitions, literals, labels, and data equivalencing
  • Describe types of program flow statements and their usage
  • Describe statements for CASE, IF, program control, bit extraction, and manipulation
  • Lab Exercise
  • Use constructs such as the CASE statement and WHILE loop

Terminal I/O

  • Discuss how to perform terminal I/O in programs
  • Discuss error handling and data conversion
  • Lab Exercise
  • Perform terminal I/O to prompt for data and implement data conversion

Operators and expressions

  • Describe types of operators and expressions
  • Discuss arithmetic expressions and conditional expressions
  • Discuss special expressions such as: assignment, CASE, IF, and group comparison expressions

Pointers and addressing

  • Describe direct and indirect data access, pointers, and structures.
  • Discuss additional pTAL pointer data types
  • Discuss data transfer and scan statements to illustrate use of pointers and structures
  • Describe pTAL caveats
  • Lab Exercise
  • Use pointers, addressing, and data movement

Procedures and subprocedures

  • Describe procedures and subprocedures, with or without parameter passing
  • Discuss procedure declaration, subprocedure declaration, and procedure calls and returns
  • Explain the use of formal and actual parameters in procedure calls and returns
  • Discuss TAL and pTAL considerations for Guardian procedures that are obsolete for pTAL procedures
  • Lab Exercise
  • Code procedures, with and without parameters
  • Invoke procedures, with and without parameters

Interfacing C and TAL

  • Describe the Common Run-Time Environment (CRE)
  • Demonstrate ho to interface C and TAL and memory model considerations
  • Discuss the use of development tools such as Bind, nld, and noft
  • Lab Exercise
  • Build runnable units from separately compiled C and/or TAL objects
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