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Interactive Data Language (IDL)

Last updated: August 18, 2011

What Does Interactive Data Language (IDL) Mean?

Interactive data language (IDL) is a programming language used to build applications performing data analysis. IDL is mostly utilized by astronomers and medical imaging experts.

The typical IDL application is in the bulk interactive processing field, where digital image processing requires high speed in many applications, such as those in security and the monitoring of applications requiring real time analysis.


Techopedia Explains Interactive Data Language (IDL)

IDL effectively processes data arrays of different dimensions, including vectors (single dimension arrays). IDL saves multiple programming codes required to perform repeated functions, thereby using single lines of code for such functions.

IDL is extremely useful when arithmetic overflow issues occur and store a NaN (Not a Number) value, rather than returning an exception, which could force a closed program if written in any other language.

IDL is not efficient during sequential element operations. Thus, if a program does not contain a sufficient number of arrays, IDL is not advised. (Using a language like C# is much more efficient.)


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