Glossary of Terms

What does that mean? Find out here!

How to Use

These terms are listed under corresponding categries of tutorials/modules and is continuously being updated. Some terms are repeated in different curcumstances.

If you're looking for a particular term, use your keyboard and type CTRL+F to find the term you're looking for!

General Lingo

compile - To transform a program written in a high-level programming language from source code into object code
(AKA, to run your program)

variable - a reference to information

float - to define a variable with a fractional value
(e.g., 1.5 is a float, 1 is an integer)

integer - a whole number
(e.g., 2 is an integer, 2.5 is a float)

concatenate - operation of joining two strings together.
The term "concatenation" literally means to merge two things together

parameter - a special kind of variable, used in a subroutine to refer to one of the pieces of data provided as input to the subroutine. These pieces of data are called arguments

argument - a value that you pass to a routine
(pieces of data referred to by a parameter)

function - a type of procedure or routine

element - an essential part of programming
(e.g, a variable, loop, conditional, input/output, subroutines/functions)


t - time

scale - determines the size of the shape

abs - takes the absolute value

sin - mathematical sin function

cos - mathematical cos function

group - function that takes a list and returns a list of lists such that the concatenation of the result is equal to the argument. Moreover, each sublist in the result contains only equal elements.
(e.g, > group "Mississippi" = ["M","i","ss","i","ss","i","pp","i"])

move - places shape according to x and y parameters (x,y)

filled - draws a coloured-in shape according to 1 colour parameter (i.e red)

circle - draws shape as a circle, takes 1 parameter as the radius (i.e. 36)

ngon - creates a shape in ELM (draws a polygon) by taking a # of sides parameter (i.e 4) and a size parameter (i.e 50)

Text Editing & Arithmetic

show - displays parameter after it
(i.e variable ourText or a string “hello Jon”)


intercalate - function that takes a Text and a list of Texts and concatenates the list after interspersing the first argument between each element of the list (It inserts the list xs in between the lists in xss and concatenates the result)

concat - The concatenation of all the elements of a container of lists

intersperse - function that takes a character and places it between the characters of a Text. Subject to fusion.
NOTE: it performs replacement on invalid scalar values

flow down - elements stack down (flow is a function allowing you to stack element

image - will display the given image with the given width/height, stretching or compressing the image if needed.

fittedImage - is smarter; it will display the given image, cropping, stretching and centering to give the best fit. The image is not scaled.

croppedImage - takes a rectangular slice out of the given image starting at the specified coordinate

tiledImage - tiles the given image, filling the given area completely.

width - changes the width, adjusting the other dimension (height) automatically

height - changes the height, adjusting the other dimension (width) automatically

opacity - adjusts transparency of the image

uncurry - converts a curried function to a function on pairs. (Currying is the process of transforming a function that takes multiple arguments into a function that takes just a single argument and returns another function if any arguments are still needed)

spacer - a blank box. Great for making spaces!
(e.g color red (spacer 30 30))

flow inward - elements stack inwards (flow is a function allowing you to stack elements)

container - makes a “box” using a width, height and alignment (e.g., middle)


tag - Constructs an element with a custom name

leftAligned - moves (aligns) to the left

rgba - a colour mode. Contains True when the current layer of the current window is in RGBA mode, False means color index mode.


flow - function allowing you to stack elements on top of other elements

flow right - elements stack to the right

flow down - elements stack down

flow inward - elements stack inward

flow left - elements stack to the right

centered - moves (aligns) in the center

rightAligned - moves (aligns) to the right