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Michael Abbott wrote:

I'm using Lua as a driver in test hanresses with large data sets and over distributed heterogenous platforms that tend to be roundly featured but low on memory and processor speed. Executing the code under test takes long enough by itself - the less time wasted preparing tests, farming them out to the respected platforms, collating results, etc. the better.

On a lot of platforms, the I/O library's been thrown away. What's it been replaced with? A custom library *with exactly the same interface*, making the system portable and easy to use for someone already accustomed to Lua. A standard reference model for such libraries isn't so much important because it's portable to everything, or because it's efficient, or small, or simple, but because it provides a *standard*. This is why I believe the suggestion of platform specific bindings, or using one of many monster extension libraries is hurting Lua. It not only restricts the reuse of code, but the reuse of *skills*.

The joy of Lua is that if you don't want "standard" libraries, you just don't build them in. Lua could come with 3x10^26 "standard" libraries, and as long as there was some documentation saying what the minimum and common sets were, it wouldn't suffer in the slightest.