I’m sitting here during the third day of the JVM language summit, and thought I’d summarize the second day a bit. Hopefully I’ll soon be able to write about this day too as soon as it’s over.
The second day started out with Gosling talking about some of his history and how that influenced the design and implementation of Java. Not extremely interesting, but a few funny soundbites. Best was probably the quote from Guy Steele: “Lisp is like a black hole”, meaning that if you design a language close enough to Lisp, Lisp ends up dragging it in and the language becomes Lisp.
After that Tom Ball talked about JavaFX script and javac. This was quite interesting, the challenges of compiling something using the javac compiler does seem to be fraught with problems.
Charles Nutter made a good talk about the internals and interesting parts of the implementation of JRuby.
After that it was lunch and some open spaces talk about language interoperability. This is really a large problem and it was obvious that we don’t really know how to do this well between different languages on the JVM. The one solution is always go through the Java types, but this has the problems that the Java types are quite poor in comparison to some of the other languages.
Eugene Kuleshov gave an introduction to the ASM bytecode generation framework, which was very helpful - as it turned out at least half the people in the room were already using it.
Rob Nicholson gave an intro to IBM’s work on PHP for the JVM which seems to have many of the same problem as we have faced with JRuby.
Attila talked about his MOP and the directions it will take in the future, and this looks really nice. I’m looking forward to having some time to play with it.
Rémi Forax talked about his backport of JSR-292. I’m totally in awe about this. I wouldn’t even know where to begin to implement it. Very cool.
Rich Hickey did a very inspired talk about Clojure. Definitely one of the best talks - it includes loads of information, introduced the language in a good way and was generally very cool. I do have some opinions about the language itself, but I’ll save that for another blog post.
The last two talks of the day was about Python. The first one was about gradual typing for Python - this is interesting work and long term it would be interesting to see how it turns out. The Jython internals talk by Frank was also very nice and gave at least me some new insight into how their implementation actually works.
All in all a very interesting day.