July 8, 2005 - Allison Answers Questions about TPF & Pugs

Originally posted at use.perl.org

"Absolutely. Autrijus' says his six-month sabbatical is drawing to a close soon, and he would welcome sponsorship from TPF or other places. TPF would also be happy to sponsor other Pugs developers. If you're interested in sponsoring Pugs development, contact Autrijus directly, or contact allison {at} perl {dot} org."

Would TPF consider funding Autrijus for Pugs?

I'm not exactly sure what that means. There isn't much of a difference between "TPF projects" and "non-TPF projects". They're all groups of volunteers working on stuff for Perl. Pugs uses Perl.org (i.e. TPF) mailing lists. I suppose when you boil it down to brass tacks, all it really means is that the code isn't being contributed to TPF; it's copyright Autrijus Tang. That's okay. It means we'd have to do a little legal legwork to incorporate Pugs code into Perl 6, but it's not a big deal.

Pugs isn't a TPF project?

But will Pugs code ship in the production release of Perl 6.0? I don't know yet. It partly depends on the speed, robustness, and maintainability of the final code (which is not something the Pugs folks need to be thinking about right now). Whatever the relationship in terms of lines of code, the work being done in Pugs will certainly have a significant impact on the final form of the Perl 6 compiler. What I think is most likely is that the final compiler will be a synthesis of ideas between Pugs and the Parrot compiler tools. To be postmodern about it: the production implementation of Perl 6 both is and is not Pugs.

Autrijus has asked us not to treat Pugs as a production system. It may sound strange at first, but I think he's absolutely right. It gives the Pugs team a lot of flexibility to experiment without worrying about the results. It's called "R & D" in the corporate world, and is probably the biggest source of technological innovations in all large companies.

Will Pugs be the production implementation of Perl 6?

I think Pugs is incredibly cool. I remember when I first heard about it: Leo and Nick and I were at the German Perl Workshop. Leo pulled out his laptop and showed us some Perl 6 code running. I was so excited I immediately downloaded it and compiled GHC to play with it, and then used it for a demo in a talk the next week.

What do you think about Pugs?

Pugs is a prototype compiler for Perl 6. It's currently written in Haskell, but is being ported to Perl 6. It's not intended to be a complete compiler from Perl 6 source to executable code, it's a compiler targeting a virtual machine: Parrot, CLR, Mono, JVM, etc. In fact, there's a good chance it'll target all of those.

What is Pugs?

Allison Randal has some answers to questions that came up at YAPC::NA about Pugs and where TPF stands in relation to the project.

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