A language that is generated from programming source code, but that cannot be directly executed by the CPU. Also called "bytecode," "p-code," "pseudo code" or "pseudo language," the intermediate language (IL) is platform independent. It can be run in any computer environment that has a runtime engine for the language.|
In order to execute the intermediate language program, it must be interpreted a line at a time into machine language or compiled into machine language and run.
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Visual Basic and Java are notable examples of programming languages that generate an intermediate language. They are compiled into bytecode, which is then converted into machine code at runtime. Microsoft's .NET and Common Language Infrastructure (CLI), the ECMA standard version of .NET, generate an intermediate language (see .NET). See Java Virtual Machine, bytecode, managed code and runtime environment.