[plt-scheme] history of stack and heap.

From: hendrik at topoi.pooq.com (hendrik at topoi.pooq.com)
Date: Fri Apr 24 12:19:15 EDT 2009

On Fri, Apr 24, 2009 at 09:40:41AM -0400, Matthias Felleisen wrote:
> Stacks as a special-purpose form of GC is a hat that's even older  
> than me. And I am old.

Let me try to recall history.

Stacks were definitely well-known in 1960, when Algol 60 came out.  
Possibly even in 58, when the preliminary designs were published.

Garbage colection appeared with Lisp, as far as I know, around the same 
time.  But Lisp still used a stack, not a heap.  And the Lisp 
garbage collector used a stack.

So it looks as if stacks are older than garbage collectors.

Ah.  There was also IPL-V, which had dynamic storage allocation and a 
stack, but reference counting instead of garbage collection.
Programs were linked data structures on the heap.  I can't remember 
whether the stack was also on the non-collected heap.  Does anyone here 
have a better memory than mine?

-- hendrik

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