Re: Small C Compiler (Tommy Thorn)
Wed, 5 May 1993 12:32:36 GMT

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Newsgroups: comp.compilers
From: (Tommy Thorn)
Keywords: courses, books
Organization: DAIMI: Computer Science Department, Aarhus University, Denmark
References: 93-05-012 93-05-017
Date: Wed, 5 May 1993 12:32:36 GMT (Elan Feingold) writes:
>>(I'm also going to snag either the dragon book or the "Crafting a Compiler
>>in C" to run along beside it...)

>Unless you're heavily into theory, I would skip the dragon book and pick
>up Alan Holub's most excellent "Compiler Design in C." He goes through
>the design of lex and yacc clones in great detail (all source code
>included) and then builds a C compiler with them. The release I had
>contained lots of typos and other small errors -- I found about 15 in the
>first 150 pages! But all in all it's an excellent book -- IMHO. I got
>the "Crafting a Compiler" book and then returned it in favor of Holub's.
>Another nice thing about it is that he does go into theory, besides having
>all the source code there too.

While I agree "Crafting a Compiler" isn't worth the money, I strongly
disagree with your suggestion. The dragon book isn't just an excellent
compiler book, it's a real classic, with a vast source of algorithms and
representations whose usefulness range way beyond compiler applications.
To get the practical aspects I'd recommend studying free compilers in
parallel with reading the book, like Small C, lcc, gcc, (in order of
difficulty) and properly others.

And I'm *not* into theory at all.

A completely other thing, it the fact that the code generation and
optimization chapter is beginning to show age, in view of more modern
techniques, like SSA and RTL. Does anyone know of a book which is more up
to date on these issues?

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