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chromatic (983)

chromatic
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http://wgz.org/chromatic/

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Journal of chromatic (983)

Saturday August 30, 2008
02:30 PM

Perl 6 Design Minutes for 16 July 2008

[ #37316 ]

The Perl 6 design team met by phone on 16 July 2008. Larry, Allison, Jerry, Will, Jesse, and chromatic attended.

Larry:

  • switched my laptop to Ubuntu for various reasons, mostly work
  • helped me get a runnable Pugs too
  • haven't worked much on the standard grammar
  • mostly thinking about refactoring the names
  • thinking about various other questions people are asking
  • just checked in a revamp of the closure semantics
  • a little under the weather too

Allison:

  • almost entirely absorbed by OSCON this week
  • hacking a little bit on the three remaining test failures on the pdd25cx branch
  • Patrick gave me some information on the PGE failures
  • we'll work on that tonight
  • hopefully will merge in the branch finally

Jerry:

  • haven't done much this week
  • will report for Patrick and Jonathan though
  • Patrick's working on lexical issues
  • he's much closer to understanding how Parrot can handle them
  • he's also working with HLL to get it to work within PCT
  • then he can make it work within high-level languages itself
  • that'll let them use the same named classes as Parrot's base classes (for example, Integer) instead of funky workarounds
  • Jonathan added enum support
  • fixed a couple of segfaults
  • something like 910 new spectests passing between Parrot 0.6.3 and 0.6.4
  • that's a great number
  • much of it came from the Summer of Code project for the Perl 6 test suite
  • Adrian and Moritz have been a big help there

Patrick: (in a followup)

The primarily reason we want HLL support is to take advantage of HLL type mapping, so that str register-to-PMC conversion automatically gives me back a Perl 6 Str object instead of a Parrot String PMC. Same for int to Int, num to Num, and ResizablePMCArray to List conversions.

c:

  • things are pretty slow
  • traveling and haven't had much time
  • still working with Andrew on the GC; he's making progress
  • helping Allison; we're getting close
  • will definitely start the string branch very soon
  • maybe we'll merge that back in stages
  • waiting for some guidance on the closure issue

Will:

  • Parrot 0.6.4 came out on Tuesday, thanks to Bernhard
  • no major new features, although the NEWS listing has lots of little updates
  • hopefully will get the concurrency branch merged by the next release, to make it 0.7
  • I hate Subversion
  • I wonder when we're going to update RT on perl.org
  • and that's it

Jesse:

  • talked to Richard last week about other interesting funding sources and corporate support for Perl 6
  • he's working on that
  • general strategizing on that for pushing implementations forward
  • sounds like the hackathon is fairly set post-OSCON?

Allison:

  • yes

c:

  • do we have a sense of prioritization of features, or is that up to implementors?

Jesse:

  • it's been up to implementors so far
  • every time I've asked, each one has strong feelings about how to prioritize

c:

  • I mention it just because I believe that giving people something productive to experiment with sooner is very useful for marketing

Jesse:

  • I've talked to Flavio about this, for example
  • wondering if there are subsystems of features that could come before others

Jerry:

  • what I really want in Rakudo right now is IO so I can use it for work
  • it's limited
  • you can't do sockets, basically
  • that probably won't be fixed until it's fixed in Parrot
  • that's Parrot blocking for Rakudo
  • as far as other implementations go, there are early features that all implementations share
  • I think Larry's said before that the Synopses deliberately don't look ahead too much
  • if you do operators before you do objects, that's a way forward
  • although parameterized roles are funded work
  • and volunteer work

Larry:

  • I do use those in my work

c:

  • I don't have a sense of our priorities

Larry:

  • Perl 6 will be very useful when it does its Perl 5 subset in a way that's better than Perl 5
  • that said, there's a danger when Perl 6 gets used in anger by people who start to rely on transient bugs or workarounds for missing features
  • there needs to be expectations management

Jerry:

  • possibly the best way to do that is to say "Only use what passes in the spectest suite"

Jesse:

  • unless there's a way to disable unstable features outside of devel checkouts

Larry:

  • but what does it mean that a feature works?
  • closure cloning might almost work, but there are some bugs
  • we can put a large warning in the documentation that not all features are stable or final yet
  • or run into the problem of installing Cabal features to run Pugs
  • some packages are under development
  • you're lucky if it all works
  • it's easy to get an explosion of things that don't all work with each other
  • I don't profess to have the right answer
  • I don't think there is a right answer
  • mostly I think the order of implementation will tend to iron itself out
  • everyone has an itch to have the basic stuff working
  • everyone has extra itches which may not correspond to other itches
  • they're exercising parts of the design that other people aren't exercising
  • I want convergence to happen

Jerry:

  • provided you don't go crazy trying to keep it all in mind

Larry:

  • there may be a need to name development subset versions
  • maybe pre-6.0 isn't a sufficiently rich naming scheme
  • at least it's an interesting problem

Jesse:

  • it would be interesting to find a name for subsets of what will be Perl 6
  • the trivial functional subset of Perl 6 that Audrey made in a week was a working subset of Perl 6

Larry:

  • and it did junctions

Jesse:

  • I've had multiple implementors prod me about how to name or label these things
  • here's a thing we've targeted
  • we can talk about it as an entity, even if it's not 6.0.0

Larry:

  • there's a sense in which the true name is the list of all of the tests it passes

Jerry:

  • Rakudo has a ROADMAP
  • Patrick keeps it updated
  • but he had some unanswered questions in that thread

Larry:

  • there's a long list of things blocking from the Parrot end
  • a lot of things are in perpetual redesign

Allison:

  • I finished the last Parrot design document
  • we need resources to implement them

Jerry:

  • there were a lot of early prototypes that made it 60 - 80% of the way
  • a lot of these features are waiting for a final thing
  • it's no fun coding HLLs for a moving target
  • they want to wait for the final version, rather than rewriting it several times

Jesse:

  • the Rakudo ROADMAP is just a bullet list
  • no subtasks, no estimates of effort
  • a list in rough priority order
  • it could use a couple of more levels of information

Jerry:

  • we could make it a hackathon task

Jesse:

  • I'll only be there for a couple of hours

Jerry:

  • we could pull in some time earlier in the week
  • why don't we call these chunks of features "traits"?
  • that's an unused term
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