[racket] Fundamentals

From: Hendrik Boom (hendrik at topoi.pooq.com)
Date: Wed Oct 13 19:41:41 EDT 2010

On Wed, Oct 13, 2010 at 06:29:04PM -0500, Mathew Kurian wrote:
> Hello everybody,
> Recently, I have been trying to understand a bit more about the Racket
> language itself and today I hit a few questions along the way. So, here they
> are:
> -- Is Racket an interpreted language? If not, how does it convert
> to machine/binary code?

Yes, it is often interpreted.  It is also often compiled.  The most 
efficient implementations contain compilers, unless they have to run in 
extremely limited storage space.  Some Racket implementations have both 
interpreters and compilers.  The compile can be used, for example, to 
compile rthe interpreter.

> -- In general computing, how does the random function work? How can computer
> language ever create random numbers, that would be impossiible?

It just generates a deterministic sequence of numbers that look pretty 
random.  There are various statistical tests mathematicians use to look 
at the sequences.  For a particularly sophisticated randome number 
generator, look up "Mersenne Twister" on the net.

> -- How does Racket initiate a string memory allocation? From a bunch of
> controlled electrical signals to an virtual action, how does Racket achieve
> this? (I am looking for a generalization of the idea, not too technical.
> With some direction to start, I can go ahead and google for articles to find
> for an in-depth analysis.)

I'm really not sure what this question means.  But storage allocation in 
Racket is usually done using a process called "Garbage collection".  Go 
look it up.

> Thank you for your help.

You're welcome. Feel free to ask again.

-- hendrik

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