Qwaq developing new fast Smalltalk VM

7 June, 2008

Eliot Miranda has posted some exciting news – he is working at Qwaq to develop Cog, a fast Smalltalk VM for Croquet. The VM will dynamically compile Smalltalk bytecodes to machine code transparently to the programmer, and execute this machine code instead of interpreting bytecode. He expects to have an initial release within a year which should execute pure Smalltalk code some 10 to 20 times faster than the current Squeak VM. The new VM will be released under the Qwaq open source licence (MIT-compatible).

Eliot will be posting notes on his progress and design decisions on his blog, and notes that the VM is to be released under the Qwaq open source licence. He’s looking to maintain compatability with the existing Croquet VM, Hydra, and Slang plugins. His first post gives lots of interesting details of work done so far, and his future plans.

Eliot is a long-time Smalltalker, having worked on VisualWorks for many years with a focus on VM development, and has recently been working with Gilad Bracha at Cadence.

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