Parrot is a virtual machine designed to efficiently compile and execute bytecode for dynamic languages. Parrot currently hosts a variety of language implementations in various stages of completion, including Tcl, Javascript, Ruby, Lua, Scheme, PHP, Python, Perl 6, APL, and a .NET bytecode translator. Parrot is not about parrots, though we are rather fond of them for obvious reasons.

NFG is (somewhere in the vincinity of...) here

"N̈" (Or "n̈" if you don't like caps) is a grapheme from several minor extended Latin alphabets. It occurs in the orthographies of the Jacaltec Mayan dialect, Cape Verdean Creole, and in the rockumentary "This is Spın̈al Tap". Today I want to talk about the injustices this symbol has faced in the past and how, starting today, parrot can right them.

call for Parrot foundation members applications

We're coming up on the annual Parrot Foundation member's meeting. Which includes the nomination and election of the next Parrot Foundation board of directors. And being so, the foundation is inviting everyone eligible for membership to apply. To be eligible for becoming a member of the Parrot Foundation you must:

  1. be nominated by two current members
  2. have made at least two contributions to the project (or a language implementation targeting the project)
  3. sign a contributor agreement

PAST::Transformer and the Foundation for PAST Optimization

Coding for GSoC officially began this Monday, but I decided to get a head start and started working on PAST::Walker Thursday. PAST::Walker is the foundation for the rest of what I will be doing regarding PAST Optimization, and the foundation is largely laid. There have been a few complications, and a few decisions remain to be made(and implemented) before I can say that PAST::Walker and PAST::Transformer are finished, but implementing PAST::Walker has gone smoothly and quickly for the most part.

Dynamic code points, the grapheme tables and not getting your services denied.

One of the features of NFG I've mentioned before is that it solves our problems with variable width characters without taking additional storage space over UCS-4, on top of which it's defined. The artifact that allows us to pull off that trick is called the 'grapheme table' and today, I'll try to explain how it works.

How do threads fit into parrot?

(This post is to show my thinking on my GSoC project. Sorry in advance if it's not especially coherent or interesting out of context.)

Over the past week I've been examining the Parrot code to figure out how hybrid threads are going to fit in. First, if I'm going to make Parrot do stuff concurrently, I have to figure out what Parrot is actually doing at all.

GSoC Project: NCI and Stack Frame Improvements

My Google Summer of Code (2010) objectives are to integrate libffi into the NCI framework and to build a new Stack Frame builder that takes advantage of the llvm.

UCS-4, NFG and how the grapheme table makes it awesome.

After laying down the foundations of what NFG does in previous blog posts I've started implementing, as part of my work in this Summer of Code, a new Unicode encoding for parrot, UCS-4. In this post I'll try to explain what it is and how it makes NFG easier to achieve.

PAST Pattern Matching

Last Wednesday, I discussed a little bit of the rationale behind my GSoC project and summarized the most low-level portion of my project: PAST::Walker. Today, I want to describe another portion of my project: PAST::Pattern. PAST::Walker provides a very powerful and complete interface. Any possible transformation or other traversal of a PAST should be implementable using it. However, it will not be very convenient if you only want to turn return nodes containing only a call node into tail-call nodes.

Instrumenting Parrot

Having an instrumentation framework opens the doors to having many different tools that can help to diagnose problems within a piece of code. One main example of this is Valgrind. Valgrind provides an interface for making many different tools that help to diagnose and identify certain specific problems, ranging from memory leaks to multithreaded data races between threads. Furthermore, the framework is also used to provide profiling tools, such as Callgrind and Cachegrind, to determine useful information such as call graphs and execution times of functions.

Encodings, charsets and how NFG fits in there.

The post from last week talked about what NFG was and tried to explain how it was a good feature for parrot to have. Today I'll be slightly more concrete and talk a bit about how NFG fits inside the parrot string structure. There's other parts of parrot that will need hacking on, but this time I want to limit myself to the the two bottommost pointers in the STRING structure definition and the concepts behind them.

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