OS design...

Andrew J. Blumberg blumberg@ai.mit.edu
Mon, 19 Oct 1998 23:48:48 -0400 (EDT)

> My point is, let's just not go there, that would be continuing
> the kind of mistakes that current OS's make by priveling one
> language (or at least one set of calling conventions) over all
> others. Instead, let's have some standard method for accessing
> services that is reasonably language-neutral and easy for a
> compiler writer (compiling *whatever* language) to cope with. 

two comments;

a) it is not clear that one can have a "language-neutral" service access
model; the choice to attempt to not bias the service model is itself a bias
(and no, i'm not trying to be irritating by that last sentence; it's just that
i don't think neutrality really means what you think it does).

b) there's a lot to be said for biasing the operating system towards one 
language, or at least one general language family.  an enormous amount can be 
accomplished by having the operating system trust the language, for example.
a lot of the leverage of something like the lisp machine comes from this 
interplay of language and operating system.  while i understand the lossage
that prompt your position (having used lisp FFI stuff, for example), i'm not
sure i buy your conclusion.

why do we necessarily want to make all languages suffer so as to be as 
inclusive as possible with respect to supported languages?

								- andrew