File Structure and Syntax

All Cabbage source files are made up of several sections which are defined in XML type tags. The most important sections are the Cabbage, CsInstruments, and CsScore sections. The cabbage section comprises of Cabbage syntax which defines how an instrument will look. Information on Cabbage syntax can be found here. All other sections will contain Csound code only. The CsInstruments and CsScore sections determine how an instrument will sound, and when it will start start. All Csound code is case sensitive. That means upper-case letters are not the same as lower-case letters. Presented below is the typical document structures for a single Cabbage file.

//cabbage code used to create widgets
//all code relating to Csound should be encapsulated between 
<CsoundSynthesizer> and </CsoundSynthesizer>
//this sections tell Csound how to interact with various devices and hardware
//this section contains instrument definitions
//this section tells Csound when and how to perform instruments defined
//in the CsInstruments section above. 

Csound code can be described in terms of its syntax and grammar. Each section uses a slightly different syntax. For instance, the syntax used in the CsInstruments section is not the same as the simplified syntax used in the CsScore section. While the score section is made up of different statements, the CsInstruments syntax is made up of 6 different components:

  • keywords
  • variables
  • constants
  • opcodes
  • operators
  • comments

Let's consider each one in turn.