[mercury-users] "What do you think about Mercury ?"

Fergus Henderson fjh at cs.mu.OZ.AU
Thu Sep 23 13:37:24 AEST 1999

On 10-Sep-1999, Tyson Dowd <trd at cs.mu.OZ.AU> wrote:
> On 09-Sep-1999, Robert Ernst Johann JESCHOFNIK <rejj at cat.cs.mu.OZ.AU> wrote:
> > On Thu, 9 Sep 1999, Tyson Dowd wrote:
> > 
> > > > > > - What would you change in the language/implementation ?
> > > > ...
> > > > > Don't use "C" as a "portable assembler"
> > > > 
> > > > Could you elaborate here?  What don't you like about that?
> > > > As a user, why do you care how the implementation works?
> > > 
> > > Because it's so slow.  Particularly under NT.
> > 
> > On the other hand, I think I would (at least for the time being) rather
> > know that the developers efforts are going towards extending the language,
> > rather than spending large amounts of time writing solaris, bsd, linux,
> > aix, irix, windows, etc etc code generators.
> > Possibly once the compiler is done (heh), or at least implements
> > everything that is in the language design, then it may be rewarding to go
> > ahead and create native code generators. I just can't see it doing much
> > good right now, though.
> I agree, but there are other ways of generating native code that we
> could use.  For example using C-- might be a more lightweight way of
> using the "portable assembler" approach.  Especially if we can make
> C-- into a library we can link with, and so avoid the extra process creation.

If compilation speed is what you're after, then it would be better
to avoid native code and assembler entirely, and instead use bytecode.

The Mercury compiler actually has support for generating bytecode,
but as yet no-one has written the bytecode interpreter.
(As usual, volunteers welcome ;-)

Fergus Henderson <fjh at cs.mu.oz.au>  |  "I have always known that the pursuit
WWW: <http://www.cs.mu.oz.au/~fjh>  |  of excellence is a lethal habit"
PGP: finger fjh at        |     -- the last words of T. S. Garp.
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