two co-existing projects

Paul Prescod
Mon, 28 Apr 1997 21:58:05 -0400

Alexey Goldin wrote:
> Forgive me my ignorance. I am watching this discussion with
> fascination but there are a lot of thing I do not understand. I am not
> a computer scientist but just a physics graduate student. In relation
> to Lisp --- I am just a satisfied customer. Could anyone explain me
> what VM is good for? 

A VM is good for shipping the same code on multiple platforms without
worrying about the underlying kernel, file system and hardware.

> Is it just a tribute to Java hype? 

No,the Java hype is a tribute to the long-nascent idea of a portable VM.

> Does anyone
> seriously hope to replace Java VM with New(TM) and Improved(TM)
> Virtual(TM) Machine(TM)?

Yes. The JVM will become more general at some point, if only because big
players like IBM and Microsoft want it to support their other languages
(Cobol, REXX, SmallTalk, C++, Fortran) efficiently. If we have a
Universal VM up-and-running when those groups go to the standards bodies
then our ideas would have a good chance of being incorporated. On the
Internet, running code is the first level of standardization.

 Paul Prescod