Re: Do we really need virtual machines?

Paul Colin Gloster <Colin_Paul_Gloster@ACM.org>
21 Oct 2004 22:28:22 -0400

          From comp.compilers

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From: Paul Colin Gloster <Colin_Paul_Gloster@ACM.org>
Newsgroups: comp.compilers
Date: 21 Oct 2004 22:28:22 -0400
Organization: Compilers Central
References: 04-10-042
Keywords: VM
Content-Disposition: inline

Scott A. Moore said:


"In addition, despite the fact that most people were reminded of P-code
when Java came out, Sun attempted to put the JVM on silicon and
achieved EXACTLY the same results Western Digital did when they tried
to put the P-machine on silicon, namely a processor that could not run
bytecode as fast as a general purpose machine. Turns out all that
register manipulation and multiple modes makes a difference after all.


The tired saying that applies is: The first thing you learn from
history is that nobody learns from history."


Less famous examples have also occurred. For example, SAAB created a
processor intended to be optimized for Ada but a document (written by
a rival) claimed better performance. It is located at
pub/ws/wsd/erc32/doc/ada_bench4.pdf on FTP.ESTEC.ESA.NL (by FTP
obviously).


This kind of attempt at optimizing had been discouraged in "Computer
Architecture: A Quantitative Approach", 2nd edition, by John L
Hennessey and David A Patterson, Morgan Kaufmanm Publishers Inc, 1990,
1-55880-069-8.


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