Parrot: Revision 12
Parrot is the VM (a software virtual machine) that was originally designed for only Perl 6. It also became a general dynamic language friendly platform for implementations of Python, Ruby, and over 30 other computer languages. This will also allow such languages to more easily interoperate, and to share libraries (parroting CPAN, as it were).
Parrot is foundation that the Rakudo Perl 6 compiler is built on, just as Pugs is built on Haskell (although Pugs can also emit code for several other back end runtime engines, including Parrot).
Because Parrot's user base extends well beyond the Perl community that created it, the Parrot Foundation was founded in late 2008. This simplifies some organization and funding issues for Perl Foundation folks, while likewise making life easier for Parrot Foundation folks. Here are the new homes for these Parrot-related pages:
Parrot was developed because other VMs (like the JVM and CLR) didn't (and mostly still don't) have built in and efficient support for all of the very dynamic language features of Perl 6. And while support for these features has improved in the past few years, leading to projects like IronPython, these VMs are still primarily designed for (biased towards) static languages.
Parrot also incorporates a number of other important and noteworthy innovations (for example, it's a register-based virtual machine).