[plt-scheme] Industrial strength interpreters with Scheme?

From: Shriram Krishnamurthi (sk at cs.brown.edu)
Date: Sat Nov 3 09:35:09 EDT 2007

The people who use the word "toy" are clearly clueless because they
fail to understand that there is a difference between "toy"
interpreters and "definitional" ones, and the books whose reviews
you're reading almost certainly contain the latter, not the former.

Though there is nothing to add to Prabhakar Ragde's comments as
written, let me ask you what should always be the first response to
questions such as yours:

  What are you trying to accomplish?

Are you just trying to *understand* languages?  If so, definitional
interpreters are much better.  Are you simply trying to *understand*
how a complex interpreter would look?  Or are you trying to build one
for yourself?  If the latter, what level of performance do you really
need?  Is a simple interpreter not enough?  If so, why build an
"industrial strength interpreter" -- why not write a compiler (as Noel
indicated)?  Or do you need just an interpreter with a JIT?  In short:

  What are you trying to accomplish?


Posted on the users mailing list.