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On Mon, Oct 29, 2007 at 12:51:26PM +0000, David Given wrote:
> Another thing that's worth considering is that due to the nature of Lua, 
> standard distributions are of limited worth. The thing is that as soon as 
> you start patching the language, precompiled addons become worthless. I've 
> just added the LNUM patch to WordGrinder, in an attempt to improve 
> performance. This means that I can no longer use Debian's standard Lua, or 
> Debian's standard LuaFileSystem package, and have to start distributing, 
> compiling and maintaining my own copies of the language. (The binary size 
> has shot up from 16kB to a staggeringly huge 130kB. How will we ever cope?)

I perfectly agree, but I believe this is the case for embedded
platforms, where popular distributions are not used. I mean, on an
embedded platform you may want to recompile everything just because you
need a -Os. In that case a way to generate custom interpreters would be 
nice (imagine luarocks build lua --patch luanum; luarocks build lfs)
but that's another story.

I think there is space for using Lua as a more general purpose language,
and I believe it can scale up to reasonably large software. I was
talking in this direction, where the only thing I really think is
missing are libraries.

> Actually, there's a patch that does this:

Sure, but again this applies to the embedded area. If there is a
mechanism to extend lua syntax without changing the interpreter this
gives you for free the compatibility with all pre-compiled libraries. 

Maybe I'm completely wrong thinking that lua could be used as a general
purpose extension/programming language, but every time I need to write a
10 lines script I'd like to be able to just require three modules and do
it in lua instead of using python or perl...

Enrico Tassi