[Vm-dev] Immediates

Bert Freudenberg bert at freudenbergs.de
Thu May 7 23:37:22 UTC 2009

On 08.05.2009, at 01:13, Jecel Assumpcao Jr wrote:

> Bert Freudenberg wrote:
>> Yes.  Keep 31-bit SmallIntegers, provide e.g. 24-bit immediate  
>> characters.
>> Andreas wrote a thorough sketch of this scheme in 2006.
> I would like to see this scheme get adopted. My own suggestion for the
> spare encoding (spare if the GC is changed, that is) was for unboxed  
> 30
> bit floats, but that seems to be unpopular and I guess I can live with
> float arrays instead.
> Certainly immediate charaters are very important as we move away from
> ASCII, and I liked Andreas' suggestions of colors and short points as
> well. But I would be particularly interested in having an immediate
> encoding for symbols. You already have a global table from converting
> to/from strings, so I see no need to store anything in the symbols
> themselves. Having a trivial way to know that an object is a symbol
> without chasing a class pointer could make serializing/restoring  
> objects
> a little faster.
> -- Jecel

The quote above was Eliot's, not mine.

Having immediate Floats seems rather compelling to me, too. Or  
immediate doubles, which might be a good reason to want a 64-bit image.

- Bert -

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