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by ryan davis



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Releasing ruby2c 1.0.0 beta 1

Published 2005-02-01 @ 13:32

Tagged ruby2c, metaruby, ruby

After far too long, I finally have the dubious honor of releasing ruby2c 1.0.0 beta 1 today. I’m itching to do it, we really need to get it out there so people can get their eyes on it and give us feedback. I’m also nervous as hell… the thing is a mess!

Understand what we mean by beta. It means we need eyes on it, it means it was ready enough to put out in the wild, but it also means that it isn’t ready for any real use.

What can it do?

Well, currently it can pass all of its unit tests (325 tests with 512 assertions) and it can translate nice simple static algorithmic code into C without much problem. For example:

& cat x.rb
class Something
  def blah; return 2+2; end
  def main; return blah; end
end
& ./translate.rb x.rb > x.c
& gcc -I /usr/local/lib/ruby/1.8/powerpc-darwin x.c
x.c: In function `main':
x.c:17: warning: return type of `main' is not `int'
& ./a.out
& echo $?
4

What can it not do?

More than it can.

It can’t (and won’t) translate dynamic code. Period. That is simply not the intent.

It probably can’t translate a lot of static code that we simply haven’t come across or anticipated yet. Our tests cover a fair amount, our validation runs cover a lot more than that, but it is still fairly idiomatic ruby and that puts us at being better at certain styles of coding and much worse at others.

It is also simply rough around the edges. We’ve rounded out the rdoc but haven’t done a thing for general documentation yet. These are on our list, and rather high on our priority list, but we just haven’t had the time yet. For now, check out the rdoc and the PDF presentation that we’ve had up for a while.

PLEASE: file bugs! We need feedback and we’d like to be able to track it. The ruby2c project is on rubyforge and I’m getting the trackers set up today as well.