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From Steve Blackburn <Steve.Blackb...@anu.edu.au>
Subject Re: I hope the JVM implements most using Java itself
Date Wed, 11 May 2005 05:28:48 GMT
Hi Larry,

I understand your sentiment.  I am also a pragmatist.

One of my major missions over the past year or so has been cleaning up 
Jikes RVM to make it more modular and composable.  We've nearly got 
there with memory management, but still have a way to go with the other 
components.

Why is this important?

Because I want to make it easier for people to contribute to the 
project.  Not just in terms of a few lines here or there, or a bell or a 
whistle, but I want people to be able to drop in alternative compilers, 
alternative GC algorithms etc.  Unless the framework is right the 
impedance becomes too high and the rate of non-trivial contribution 
drops off to a trickle.  Getting the framework right after the fact is 
an enormous task.

The fundamental architecture of the VM is what makes or breaks it. The 
"just get it out the door" approach has its merits for some projects, 
but for something as complex as this, if you want the thing to 
last---which we do---give some thought to the architecture before you 
throw it over the fence.  Choosing to build it in Java or C/C++ is a 
relatively unimportant issue for most projects, but for a JVM it will 
have a significant impact on the architecture.

The goal posts are moving very fast, in terms of the spec, in terms of 
the competing technology, and in terms of the architectural targets. 
Thus the importance of ongoing non-trivial contributions is enormous 
with a project such as this.

This is why I brought it up now (and that is why I prefaced my original 
comments the way I did).

--Steve

Larry Meadors wrote:

>Despite my earlier Mono comment, I could not possibly care less what is used 
>to build the JVM. Use Ruby if it gets the job done.
>
>My vote would be to use whatever gets it done quickly and correctly. IMO, 
>focusing on performance at this point is important, but not critical. 
>
>First priority: Get it out the door, and make sure it is easy to build so 
>everyone who want to tweak it can.
>
>Second priority: Work with the community to make it faster and more stable 
>than anything anyone has ever seen.
>  
>



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