2019.01 Wishes for 2019

After enjoying the fireworks in his hometown and looking back on his grant work in December, Jonathan Worthington looks forward to 2019 giving an overview of features to appear in Perl 6 and MoarVM. Such as Partial Escape Analysis, decreasing compilation and startup time, and more concurrency safety. As well as getting Cro to 1.0 and getting the community version of the Comma IDE out. Looks like it’s going to be a busy year for Jonathan again (Reddit comments).

Rakudo on Javascript

Paweł Murias has written an update on the Javascript backend. He describes his work that is specific for the Javascript backend, and the stuff he’s done that is more generally useful, such as pre-compiling scripts before execution. Generally, and more specifically when doing a spectest, to shake out the last bugs with regards to precompilation.

Leapt seconds

Brian Duggan explains the support for leap seconds in Perl 6. And the intricacies when working with DateTime and Instant objects, taking leap seconds into account.

Tomtit profiles

Alexey Melezhik introduces Tomtit profiles, sets of predefined tasks that you can have Tomtit run for you. Interesting stuff if you’re really lazy!

Introducing p6env

Shoichi Kaji-san introduces a new tool for managing different versions of Rakudo Perl 6 called p6env. If you know how plenv works, you’re all set!

Squashathon results

Last Saturday saw yet another squashathon, this time focused on open issues that needed testing. And the winner is Ben Davies! (activity log).


Careful Rakudo Perl 6 observers may have noticed that Zoffix‘s Twitter feed has been very quiet since his tweet about awaiting Larry’s ruling with regards to the way the alias “Raku” should be used. His last tweet announced that he will no longer be involved in Perl 6 at all. On the #perl6 IRC channel, Zoffix worded it as “the project’s direction and management style doesn’t match my goals and I’ll be happier elsewhere“.

This is really sad news. Zoffix has meant a lot for the Perl 6 effort: just by looking at the sheer number of commits in the Rakudo repo, should give one an idea on how much he has done in the past 3 years. And that’s without taking into account all of the other things he’s done for Perl 6.

Zoffix, thank you for all of the work you have done! I can only hope that Larry will be able to share his views on the alias question soon and in a way that will make Zoffix come back to Perl 6.

Ticket updates

Aleks-Daniel Jakimenko-Aleksejev has made a nice overview page of current and past updates on the status of Rakudo tickets. In it, you can for instance see that people created 1254 new issues in 2018. By that metric, one can see that there’s still a lot of work to be done. But also that a lot of people are actually using Rakudo Perl 6!

Core Developments

  • Timo Paulssen fixed a performance problem on simple code blocks not getting specialized.
  • Samantha McVey made sure that the MoarVM tarball can be extracted on AIX.
  • Paweł Murias continued refining code on the Javascript backend, as described in his blog post.
  • Daniel Green performed some micro-optimizations in the code generating NFA‘s, making some cases of grammar parsing about 5% faster.
  • Jonathan Worthington merged a lot of his work regarding the lowering of $_ of the past months. This allows for much more aggressive optimizations in the near future. An immediately visible optimization is that no allocation for $_ will be done anymore for loops of the form for ^10 { ... } if $_ is not used inside the loop.
  • Elizabeth Mattijsen performed many local optimizations, such as comparing Rat‘s (4x to 15x as fast), creation of Instant (5x) and Duration objects(4x as fast), use of Map/Hash.sort (11x as fast), Buf.gist (2.5x as fast), unival (2x as fast).
  • And many other smaller fixes, improvements and additions.

Questions about Perl 6

Meanwhile on Twitter

Meanwhile on Facebook

Meanwhile on perl6-users

Perl 6 in comments

Perl 6 modules

New modules:

Updated modules:

Winding Down

A week with very mixed feelings. Joy in seeing a new year start and the anticipation of good things about to happen in 2019. An example of which are five new Perl 6 modules on CPAN, of which at least one has the potential of becoming a killer application feature of Perl 6.

Mixed feelings because of the sadness of seeing a core team member deciding on not wanting to wait any longer for guidance. Being an optimist at heart, yours truly hopes to be able to report soon that Zoffix has come back to the project that is clearly close to his heart.

So see you next week for more Perl 6 news!

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