Last Updated on May 22, 2022
Vala is an object-oriented programming language with a self-hosting compiler that generates C code and uses the GObject system.
Vala combines the high-level build-time performance of scripting languages with the run-time performance of low-level programming languages.
Vala is syntactically similar to C# and includes notable features such as anonymous functions, signals, properties, generics, assisted memory management, exception handling, type inference, and foreach statements.
Its developers, Jürg Billeter and Raffaele Sandrini, wanted to bring these features to the plain C runtime with little overhead and no special runtime support by targeting the GObject object system. Rather than compiling directly to machine code or assembly language, it compiles to a lower-level intermediate language. It source-to-source compiles to C, which is then compiled with a C compiler for a given platform, such as GCC.
Did you always want to write GTK+ or GNOME programs, but hate C with a passion? Learn Vala with these free tutorials!
Vala is published under the GNU Lesser General Public License v2.1+.
1. Vala Tutorial by GNOME
This tutorial doesn’t go into depth about basic programming practices. It only briefly explains the principles of object-oriented programming, instead focusing on how Vala applies the concepts. As such it will be helpful if you have experience of a variety of programming languages already, although in-depth knowledge of any particular one is not required.
Vala shares a lot of syntax with C#, but the author seeks to avoid describing features in terms of their similarity or differences with either C# or Java, with the aim of making the tutorial more accessible.
2. Tutorial for beginners and code samples by GNOME
By following these tutorials you will learn the basics of GUI programming using GTK+. You should have thoroughly understood the previous tutorial before embarking on this series.
3. Learn Vala in Y minutes by Milo Gilad
In GNOME’s own words, “Vala is a programming language that aims to bring modern programming language features to GNOME developers without imposing any additional runtime requirements and without using a different ABI compared to applications and libraries written in C.”
Vala has aspects of Java and C#, so it’ll be natural to those who know either.
4. Gtk+ Kick-Start Tutorial for Vala by Alberto Ruiz
This is an eight minute video showing you how to create a simple GTK+ application using the Vala programming language.
5. Vala Language Introduction by Andre Masella
This video provides an overview of the Vala programming language given to co-workers.
6. Create an ElementaryOS app with GTK & Vala! by Egee
This is a two part tutorial on how to make an ElementaryOS app using GTK and Vala.
7. Learn Vala and Gtk+ from Scratch by Alessandro Castellani
A series of 13 short videos that explain how to build native Linux Applications – Learn Vala and Gtk+ from Scratch.
8. Vala for C# Programmers by GNOME
This page describes the syntax differences, not the similarities between Vala and C#. It is intended to be a quick introduction to Vala for programmers who already know C#.
9. Vala for Java Programmers by GNOME
This page describes the syntax differences, not the similarities between Vala and Java. It is intended to be a quick introduction to Vala for programmers who already know Java.
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