Term rewriting has a large potential for industrial applications, but
these applications are always larger than one could ever dream of:
huge sets of rewrite rules and gigantic terms to rewrite pose
interesting challenges for implementors and theoreticians alike.
We give a brief overview of the generation of
term-rewriting-based tools as done in the ASF+SDF Meta-Environment
and then we sketch two major applications of term rewriting:
transformation of legacy COBOL systems and compilation of ASF+SDF to
C. Based on these experiences we suggest the study of topics
that could further advance the use of term rewriting in industrial
applications: persistent term databases,
generalized LR parsing versus parallel term rewriting, and
coordination languages versus strategy languages. It will turn
out that we have an ``alien'' view on research in term rewriting:
properties like confluence and termination are of very limited use
when selling term rewriting to industry.