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The analysis of programming language syntax usually entails the transformation of a linear sequence of tokens (a token is akin to an individual word or punctuation mark in a natural language) into a hierarchical syntax tree (abstract syntax trees are one convenient form of syntax tree). This process, called parsing, is in some respects analogous to syntactic analysis in linguistics; in fact, certain concepts, such as the Chomsky hierarchy and context-free grammars, are common to the study of syntax in both linguistics and computer science. However, the applications of these concepts vary widely between the two fields, and the practical resemblances are small.
See also; mathematics.
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