All functional languages have the interest that they can naturally be parallelized (this is not true of imperative languages like Basic, even VB#)
Pure functional languages include the good old-fashioned Lisp (even if people hate its parentheses), or the excellent Eiffel.
Those languages (based on the very strong theory of lambda calculus) are also excellent candidates as scripting languages, mixing the interest of compilers (for performance) and interpreters, plus native support for reflexion and conservation of the semantics of all "values" (i.e. they are strongly typed), and the versatile reuse of existing algorithms for many kind of "data" or execution contexts, allowing true generalisation (and true object-oriented type inference and complete polymorphism, without the cost implied by arbitrary choices of execution scheduling models hardwired in the written source code).
These languages have a natural system for eliminating dead-end code (that is not needed), they allow much more optimizations when performance is seeked.
They also simplify a lot the parallel or multithreaded programming (less mutex or critical sections needed as well, which means better performance as well, and where they occur, the synchronization is part of the job of the runtime which can create more fine-grained mutexes or critical sections only at the smallest machine level to interface the software with the various hardwares executing it).
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