Accession Number:

ADA148707

Title:

Proposal for a Small Scheme Implementation.

Descriptive Note:

Interim rept.,

Corporate Author:

MASSACHUSETTS INST OF TECH CAMBRIDGE LAB FOR COMPUTER SCIENCE

Personal Author(s):

Report Date:

1984-10-01

Pagination or Media Count:

26.0

Abstract:

Scheme is a lexically scoped dialect of LISP developed at MIT. This report determines the feasibility of implementing a Scheme-based programmingapplication environment on a contemporary personal computer such as the Apple Macintosh. The absence of virtual memory, coupled with a limitation on the maximum amount of physical memory, means that space is at a premium. The use of bytecodes is suggested and a possible instruction set sketched. Because of space constraints, tail-recursion optimization and an efficient mechanism for the reclamation of inaccessible contexts are also examined. Using the built-in operating system and user interface of the Macintosh realizes speed, functionality, and friendliness but raises a number of interesting issues. For example, the Pascal and assembler routines make many assumptions about data representation, type checking, and parameter passing. Since an implementation of Scheme is likely to have radically different conventions, the two environments must be interfaced smoothly and efficiently. In addition to the bytecoded instruction set, the authors specify the virtual machine informally, discuss the implementation of basic and advanced features, estimate the performance of such an implementation, and finally evaluate the proposed design. Author

Subject Categories:

  • Computer Programming and Software
  • Computer Hardware

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE