Re: Just got "Advanced Compiler Design Impementation" (David Greene)
29 Oct 1997 23:06:14 -0500

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From: (David Greene)
Newsgroups: comp.compilers
Date: 29 Oct 1997 23:06:14 -0500
Organization: University of Michigan EECS
References: 97-10-123
Keywords: optimize, books

Jay L Cole ( wrote:
: I just received the book "Advanced Compiler Design Implementation" by
: Steven S. Muchnick. The book is very high quality by Morgan Kaufmann
: publishers. So far, based on the introduction and table of contents,
: it looks to be a very impressive tome on the other side of compilers.
: It is nice to see a book that emphasizes the code generation and
: optimization side rather than the same old lexing/parsing and
: intermediate code representation. The only other book I've read that
: is good on the code generation side is "Design of an optimizing
: compiler" -- Wolff. Out of print now.

We are using this book in our compiler course, and as our instructor
put it, it's more of a cookbook than a teaching book. Muchnick
produces all sorts of pseudocode, but unfortunately doesn't (IMHO) do
a real good job of explaining _why_ things are the way they are. I
was particularly disappointed in the treatment of partial-redundancy
elimination. He throws out all sorts of dataflow equations without
explaining _why_ they are needed.

Moreover, there are a lot of things in the book that are just plain
_wrong_, and they're not just typos, either.

: The bibliographical references are worth the book price alone :).

Yes, the references are quite nice.

: Initial impressions is a thumbs up, but I will let you know more as
: time goes on and I have time to digest it fully.

If you want to go out and write an optimizing compiler, this book will
tell you how to do it. What it lacks are high-level explanations
of compiler and optimizer concepts.


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