[plt-scheme] xxx chooses MzScheme as preferred language

From: Jim Blandy (jimb at red-bean.com)
Date: Wed May 31 17:53:01 EDT 2006

On 5/31/06, Matthias Felleisen <matthias at ccs.neu.edu> wrote:
> Bigloo isn't Scheme per se. To achieve such numbers, you're programming
> in a special-purpose language, especially when it comes to floats. You
> write (fp+ ...) everywhere. In Bigloo you declare types at module
> boundaries.
> Chez achieved this kind of efficiency in 1993 (without all these
> hacks). Bruce Duba and I showed our systems hacks at Rice that their
> claims were wrong. But boy we had to bend over backwards to get Chez
> -o3 to be within 10% of then-C compilers. And the very moment we went
> from ints to floats, we were hosed again (and didn't pursue it).

I'm very interested in these questions, so let me pick at this a bit
to get more detail.

When you say you acheived Bigloo-like efficiency "without all these
hacks", I assume you're referring to the deviations from Scheme you
mentioned in the previous paragraph: special-purpose floating-point
operators, and types declared at module boundaries.  But you say that
you were hosed if you used floats --- so you trivially avoided needing
special-purpose floating-point operators, by not using any
floating-point values?  Then it wasn't the same problem, was it?

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