Keep Working, Worker Bee!


Truly frustrating day today — I spent nearly the whole day trying to get a particular programming thing for the contest working, and couldn't get it working. There is lots and lots of technology in the way at the moment. No fun.

I also started, over the course of yesterday and today, writing up the multilanguage semantics paper after finally deciding that no new actual research was going to be done. What I've got so far is a pretty good picture of how to model the interactions between multiple-language systems, but it is lacking concrete examples of non-lambda-calculus-based languages and it has no large language system worked out. I had initially looked into modelling one of the two popular Java calculi (Featherweight and Classic) connected to a lambda-calculus-based system, but I quickly discovered that even though they are simple for Java models, they are not in any way simple enough that I could actually say interesting things about the embedding without huge extraneous gobs of gibberish about the Java model itself, and that's not something I really care to do. I was also recently pointed to the calculi by Abadi and Cardelli, but I haven't been able to figure them out yet and time is probably a bit too tight if I'm going to submit to POPL.

I definitely want to flesh out an example with OO, and since the author of ProfessorJ is here and recently got an OOPSLA paper about ProfJ/Scheme interoperability accepted, it seems like a perfect fit to try to prove something like soundness for that. But of course I can't do that before the POPL deadline. I think what I've already got now is a good story, and complete in itself, and worth reporting as is, but since I can see all these next steps I can't help but seeing it as a list of things that aren't done yet instead of a list of things I've already done. Oh well, we'll see what they say (if I can even get a draft ready in time!).


  • This paper by Mitch and Galen (a recent PhD grad student of his) was about flow analysis, but to demonstrate their technique they apply it to a very simple object calculus, I think based on Abadi-Cardelli. (They kept it as absolutely simple as possible to make the presentation of their analysis manageable.) It was my first exposure to object calculi but I found it pretty approachable. You might be interested in looking at that to see if it could provide you with a fast path to a non-lambda calculus. You might even be able to skip the rest of the paper and just read that one section.

    Just a thought.

    By Blogger Dave Herman, at 02:49  

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