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On Jan 15, 2005, at 16:20, skaller wrote:

On Sat, 2005-01-15 at 19:45, Philippe Lhoste wrote:
Asko Kauppi wrote:
Still thinking what I'd like of Lua. A nice, cheap, portable hardware platform totally running it. I know.. it's just a matter of time. But think if -say- iPod Photo could be scripted in Lua. :D Or am I just
too Mac-aholic?

Or too Lua-holic?... :-)

Recently, I wondered if one could make a Lua processor, ie. one that
would use Lua VM opcodes as native instruction set... That would be fast!

No it wouldn't. It has been tried before -- Lisp machine for example --
and it was an abysmal failure .. slower than a conventional

The Symbolics Lisp Machines were not in fact slower that conventional hardware of the time running conventional lisps. Generally they were faster. Speed wasn't the only advantage either. Hardware support for the garbage collector meant object level incremental garbage collection (and sub-object level for very large objects); the garbage collector could scan pages that were on disk without bringing them into core memory. Hardware support for CDR coding meant a very compact list representation (arrays basically) that allowed interior pointers. Conversion between fixnums and floats was in hardware and automatically handled. The list goes on.

They failed because it was too expensive to keep them up to speed with conventional processors. It's hard when you're fabbing at 2 micron when everyone else is fabbing at 0.2 micron. So eventually stock hardware caught up and overtook them.

David Jones