Perl 6 - the future is here, just unevenly distributed

IRC log for #marpa, 2014-06-15

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01:45 jeffreykegler joined #marpa
01:45 jeffreykegler Also looking like a consideration against Lua may be speed.  Speed is not bad, but Lua seems to come in slower than Perl, and one benefit I'd hope for from going with a lightweight language is blazing speed.
01:46 jeffreykegler It may be a matter of what they compare, also.  I'm mainly looking for less calling and callback overhead, and the timings focus on things like string operations.  One of the reasons for Perl's large footprint it that it has lots of smarts about optimizing that stuff.
01:47 jeffreykegler Lua's lack of Unicode could be addressed by pulling in a library like ICU (which Jean-Damien has discovered).
02:09 Aria Yeah. Perl is pretty unmatched for string op speed.
02:09 Aria It may be slow for everything else, but that is amazingly fast.
02:15 jeffreykegler A hope I have for Lua or some other embeddable/extensible language is that it would be the basis of a Marpa interface which others could work on.
02:16 jeffreykegler Some people have contributed code to the SLIF, but only one or two -- because it's hard.
02:17 jeffreykegler One might say "Why not evolve the existing Perl interface (SLIF) in that direction?"
02:18 jeffreykegler But it would be slow and difficult, and would either involve risk for current SLIF users or two parellel lines of development and therefore twice the work.
02:19 jeffreykegler And a Lua-like language, if it's lightweight enough and embeddable, solves the issue of evolving the SLIF as well -- when it reaches a certain point, just create an XS wrapper for it.
02:22 Aria Hm. Perhaps. It feels kludgy to mix several languages.
02:23 jeffreykegler Well, the existing ones are C and Perl, and neither one of those is a real candidate for embeddable/extensible.
02:24 jeffreykegler I take your point, so I've been careful about bringing in a 3rd language, but I don't see a real alternative.
02:25 jeffreykegler Btw, I am nowhere near finally deciding to go with Lua.  A lot depends on enthusiasm for it (or lack thereof) shown by the Marpa community.
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