A Trend Towards Run-Time

The essence of JIT is that it defers a substantial portion of compile-time to run-time. In a JIT scenario, we generate machine code just-in-time to execute it.

Now consider “scripting” languages like Perl, Python, Ruby, etc. These guys don’t even bother parsing ahead of time. My 2+ GHz processor hardly breaks a sweat.

OK lets review:

  1. Programming is hard
  2. Good design is difficult
  3. Optimization sucks
  4. Processor cycles are free

Clearly, if I can spend processor cycles to make programming easier, it’s worth it.

So why am I blathering on about this? Well, I thought there was nothing left for us to usefully push into run-time. I was wrong: we can still combine edit-time and run-time. Check out the Subtext programming language and this cool demo.


2 Responses to “A Trend Towards Run-Time”

  1. 1 Mark July 5, 2005 at 12:37 pm

    I’d like to be the first to say “blah blah…Smalltalk…blah blah….Lisp…blah blah”

    Thank you.


  2. 2 andy July 9, 2005 at 11:02 pm

    Smalltalk did its duty: it forced the community to embrace MVC.
    J2EE falls short in Rapid Application Dev but GoF design patterns are key.

    But… anything in excess, and now we have a behomoth of abstract classes and loosely coupled interfaces in this pourage of plugable modules.

    Sure you can plug a toaster into your midi keyboard, but common.
    And XML? Yikes. http://www.livejournal.com/users/hyperfl0w/18673.html

    Subtext, while obviously premature, does its part:
    Identify the problems we face today.

    * We absolutely want to start with someone’s example and build on it
    * Copy,Paste,Code
    * Toolkits!
    * etc (too tired to remember others)

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