compiling to python byte codes

"Martin v. Löwis" martin at
Mon Sep 6 07:37:34 CEST 2004

Maurice LING wrote:
> Sorry if I had misunderstood your intentions. VM is something of a 
> rather old concept, since Forth days, but is revived for the sake of 
> portability. With the exception of the book by Joshua Engel, I've not 
> seen any books that is devoted on VM. Do you know of any?

One of the older ones is

Goldberg, Robson. Smalltalk-80: The Language and its Implementation.
Addison-Wesley, 1983.

A thing that just turned up in a Google search is

Christian Queinnec. Lisp in Small Pieces.
Cambridge University Press, 1996

This covers 11 interpreters and 2 compilers.

For Scheme, there is an online book

There also is an Icon book

Ralph E. Griswold and Madge T. Griswold.
The Implementation of the Icon Programming Language
Princeton University Press, 1986

On the language-independent/cross-language side, we have

Samuel Kamin. Languages: An Interpreter-based Approach
Addison-Wesley, 1990.

and, of course

Aho, Sethi, Ullman
Compilers : Principles, Techniques, and Tools.
Addison-Wesley, 1988 (with many reprints)

> As for books on compiler construction, many explains the same topics and 
> it doesn't quite help when something I want to know is so precise, or 
> are just too old for any good use.

It turns out that this is an area of computing that is very old
(compared to the total age of electronic computing), and many of its
foundations have been built years ago. So even the old books are still

Now, for *specific* questions, Usenet is the right medium, although
comp.compilers may be a better forum.


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