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If we were to play and introduce a new structure (as a patch of course ;-)), I'd want it to offer more than micro-optimisations by saving a couple of table creations and unpackings.

A feature of tables, which makes some algorithm implementations cumbersome, is that they're mutable. A consequence is that they don't support cheap structural equality. 
This means that it wouldn't be suitable as a type for "...". However, I believe it's a non-issue: non-trivial manipulations of "..." are easy if you put everything in a table "{...}"; and I'd be very curious to be shown any profiling result which pinpoints this "{...}" idiom as a cause of real-life inadequate performances...