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JIT-compilation for OCaml?
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Date: 2001-01-04 (13:09)
From: John Max Skaller <skaller@o...>
Subject: Re: JIT-compilation for OCaml?
Markus Mottl wrote:

> > the reason is
> >
> > 1. Slow, slow
> > 2. Big, big
> Maybe that's because the Java JIT-compilers were not written by Xavier? ;)

	IMHO: the reason is that Ocaml is based on theory, 
extended and modified over time with experience. Congratulations
to the Ocaml team for refusing to compromise a sound theoretical
> But the JIT-compiled/interpreted byte code seems to be pretty fast: I have
> tried it with a few mini-benchmarks to see whether this JIT-technology
> is of any worth. Really not bad...

	Why bother? The native code compiler is so fast,
it can compile a whole system faster than Java can load 
an already compiled one :-)

> Certainly! I definitely don't want to replace the normal byte code
> interpreter with a purely JIT-one. My motivation was rather portability +
> speed rather than speed alone. For the latter "ocamlopt" is more than
> good enough, and for portability we have the byte code compiler. 

	Actually, I think ocamlopt is _more_ portable.
There's no mucking around with custom run-times, etc.

> I haven't tried the Java-libraries so far. The OCaml-ones are quite
> usable, but if you can tell us what Java has that OCaml is missing,
> just tell us (in time! ;)

	That's easy: a half way decent GUI.
If Ocaml had a decent GUI API that worked on just X- and MS- Windows
systems, it would be a killer. Tk just doesn't cut it anymore.
GTK has promise, but the widgets are immature and lacking functionality.
Java's Swing is a bit messy, but it does provide a rich variety
of configurable widgets, and some documentation. :-(

John (Max) Skaller,
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