"I have a mind like a steel... uh... thingy." Patrick Logan's weblog.

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Thursday, August 10, 2006

Ruby and Python Are Slow, Aren't They?

A comment on James Robertson's blog points out...

The Ruby "VM" is implemented in the slowest way imaginable.
There is always the question of "fast enough"... Python, even Ruby have been around a many years. They are obviously meeting enough needs to keep going.

That's not to say better implementations could not expand their range. Certainly they would, all else being equal. But there are many factors and many answers to what is "fast enough".


Ian Bicking said...

Usually you will decide "this is not fast enough" and then try to fix that. How many techniques are there to fix that? There's probably a dozen in Python, a couple in Ruby... and actually I'm not sure what there is in Squeak.

As long as there's something left to do, you have a way out. If the language saved you time earlier, maybe you can use it now to fix performance problems. When there's no way left you're hosed.

Carl Gundel said...

People have been saying for years about Smalltalk that it is slow. The answer in that case was also often "it is fast enough" for most things.

My own language Liberty BASIC isn't nearly as fast as modern Smalltalk but I have thousands of paid customers who find it fast enought for their purposes. ;-)

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Portland, Oregon, United States
I'm usually writing from my favorite location on the planet, the pacific northwest of the u.s. I write for myself only and unless otherwise specified my posts here should not be taken as representing an official position of my employer. Contact me at my gee mail account, username patrickdlogan.