[plt-scheme] Porting DrScheme/MzScheme to Adobe Flex

From: Noel Welsh (noelwelsh at gmail.com)
Date: Sat Oct 11 17:02:49 EDT 2008

It is an intriguing idea.  Here are some thoughts:

- A major thrust (well, Dave Herman can correct me if I'm wrong) of
the new Javascript spec is to make Javascript suitable as a
compilation target for other languages.  In particular, adding tail
calls makes JS a suitable backend for functional languages.  Adobe
seems quite heavily involved in the new JS spec, so I assume their JS
VM will support tail calls at some point.

- Trying to implement Scheme as defined by PLT Scheme or R6RS on a JS
VM is probably the wrong thing to do.  The models of computation and
libraries are different enough that it would be painful to use, much
like the various languages that have been ported to the JVM.  For
example, in JS land you really want associative arrays to be your
default data structure.

- PLT Scheme supports multiple interacting languages, so you could
define a Javascript like Scheme and have graceful interoperation with
real Scheme, much like Typed Scheme achieves.


On Sat, Oct 11, 2008 at 9:32 PM, Barry Brown <barry at cs.sierracollege.edu> wrote:
> Has anyone looked into porting the DrScheme environment to Adobe Flex? If it
> were feasible, I see several major benefits:
> * Can run in a web browser. No software to download and install.
> * Can run as a standalone app (Adobe AIR).
> * Cross platform. Just one codebase to maintain.
> * Built-in access to rich audio, video, and graphics.
> * Access to multimedia peripherals, such as webcam and microphone.
> As of version 3.0, Adobe has open-sourced Flex. The Flex Builder Eclipse
> plug-in is free to educators and students.
> What would be the challenges to porting DrScheme to ActionScript, the
> JavaScript-like language that powers Flex/Flash?
> -B

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