How External DSLs can Save the Day

Stefan Oehme

Stefan works at the itemis R&D labs in Kiel. He is a comitter on the Eclipse Xtext and Xtend projects. Being a minimalist, he spends his time enjoying the simple things like running, good food and beautiful code.


This is an introductory session to Xtext - the world’s leading language development environment. Xtext lets you build programming languages and external domain specific languages (DSL). Well designed DSLs can boost your productivity dramatically by raising the level of abstraction. They can support technical viewpoints or business oriented requirements and are tailored to the user group and problem domain. But, to make the development of a new language worthwhile, it must be easy to define and maintain.

This is where Xtext comes into play. The framework provides APIs for the entire language stack and an architectural blueprint to develop DSLs easily. Xtext languages integrate with Eclipse, IntelliJ or browser based solutions and support command line tools like Maven and Gradle.In this session you will learn what problems Xtext can solve for you. I will be live-coding a language from scratch, showing you everything you need to get started.


  • drinks are available thanks to Oracle.
  • Donuts will also be there! Sponsored by itemis AG!