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Re: following up on speed

Ken Anderson <kanderson@bbn.com> writes:

> I think this is a good topic for this panel, because performance was a big 
> issue for Dick Gabriel.  He and others made substantial improvements to the 
> performance of Lisp and other other languages.  But he also said that 
> performance wasn't the only issue, or the most important one.  This could 
> explain why lightweight languages are so important, they focus on important 
> issues.

This prods me to ask a question that's been on my mind.  It's about GC
advocacy in, say, 1980.  At that time, memory management with
malloc/free was clearly more performant.  Did GC advocates at that time
envision research that would eventually make GC as performant or more
performant than malloc/free?  Or did they argue that advantages of GC
outweighed the performance disadvantages?

If it was the latter, we can be thankful they weren't so obsessed with
performance as to abandon GC at that time.  On the other hand, we can be
thankful that other people *were* sufficiently obsessed with performance
to do all that nice research.

<brlewis@[(if (brl-related? message)    ; Bruce R. Lewis
              "users.sourceforge.net"   ; http://brl.codesimply.net/