[pypy-dev] Work plan for PyPy

Maciek Fijalkowski fijal at genesilico.pl
Fri Jun 15 14:07:33 CEST 2007

Martijn Faassen wrote:
> Maciek Fijalkowski wrote:
>> I would be very, very careful about what people talk about.
>> Even if they talk about RPython and speed, they really don't know what 
>> they're talking about. 
> I understand that you need to be careful about not overselling RPython.
> I would also suggest you be careful about underestimating your audience. 
> You just implied I don't know what I'm talking about because I'm 
> interested in using RPython for speed. While my perspective on PyPy is 
> definitely quite different than yours, I do think I have a reasonable 
> picture of what it is about.
Sorry for underestimating you :) If I didn't add a disclaimer, I should 
at least - I meant *most* of the people are not that interested in 
speed, I kind of believe that you are the one who might be.
> [snip]
>> Also I (personally) think that good enough JIT would be a way better 
>> place to start writing speedy programs. You write it jit-friendly, you 
>> get speedup.
> People will then rightfully ask you the question when you think they can 
> benefit from a JITed interpreter in their Zope/Django/Pylons projects. 
> RPython, immature as the toolchain might be, is at least somewhat usable 
> today.
the real problem is that RPython is quite mature for building 
stand-alone applications, while it's usefulness as a CPython extension 
generator is somehow debatable. There are few steps needed for that, 
like improving our reference counting GC implementation, moving from 
rctypes to new interface and so on and so on. This would greatly improve 
performance and usability. These are not small and uninvolved tasks - 
it's very much in the core. I think we would welcome someone who will do 
that, but seems unlikely, as first someone from the core team would need 
to spend a lot of effort on that. It's not question about whether it's 
worth that - I think it is. The open question is who is willing to spend 
time on this - if there is someone, good, I'll not try to stop him.
> You could tell me that I'd be more productive if I contributed to the 
> JIT generator, but then I'd go away again and you'd lose a potential 
> contributor. If I can speed up my templating language using RPython I 
> might stick around. I realize that I personally am of small potential 
> value to the project, but who knows who else you might draw in this way?
I'm not saying this. I wouldn't be productive contributing to JIT.
> Two points:
> * in an open source project, others might be helping you maintain this 
> toolchain, so the cost might be relatively little to you.
> * you will likely still have some maintenance cost. This could be an 
> investment: maintaining something not part of your core goal may draw in 
> sufficient new contributors to actually benefit the core goals as well.
> I realize I'm speaking from a quite different cultural perspective than 
> many PyPy developers. I also realize I'm arguing from a self-interested 
> perspective. I also genuinely believe that taking these other 
> perspectives into account may help your project. So please cut me some 
> slack here. :)
It's not about cultural differencies I think. It's more about my own 
time and how I would like to use it. I would rather spend my own time on 
making extension modules or making CPython's extension modules work on 
top of PyPy than on extcompiler, which needs some more work.

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