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Rob Barris wrote:

I would like to ask if there is any work or research available or ongoing about building a Lua JIT runtime.

Wouldn't you be better off sitting ontop of a JITing runtime that already supports that? The most obvious candidate being the .Net runtime because that is widespread, seems to be better than the Java one and with Mono for Linux and the DLR for the Web (Windows/Mac/Linux) runs pretty much everywhere.

Plus you then get the benefit of all the tool support for .Net including if someone wants to write it a language extension for intellisense in Visual Studio (Sapphire Steel have done this for Ruby).

Microsoft seem to be pretty keen on helping people move languages to the DLR (IronPython and IronRuby come to mind). The IronPython package ships with source so that you can see how to put a language ontop of the DLR.