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Ruby VM Roundup: IronRuby 1.0 Coming Up, RubySpec, JRuby 1.3.1

by Werner Schuster on Jun 19, 2009 |

IronRuby, the Ruby implementation for the CLR, has been steadily improving - and it's now heading for a 1.0 release soon. The abstract for a talk scheduled for July 23rd 2009 at O'Reilly's OSCON states it in clear terms:

IronRuby is 1.0! Come and see how IronRuby is used in .NET programs, how well it performs, and how conformant it is. [..] OSCON has an important place in the history of IronRuby, and it is only appropriate that we launch IronRuby 1.0 at OSCON 2009.

So,  how compliant will IronRuby 1.0 be? The answers is available online: ironruby.info shows results for a RubySpec run (at the time of this writing the result are from 2009-05-06).

Some more information about what this data means for IronRuby can be seen in Interview with IronRuby team member Jimmy Schementi (Jimmy's blog, Jimmy on Twitter). As Jimmy explains, while the overall result is 82.3 % seems low, the result is skewed by some of the results for library support. Language compliance, ie. how well IronRuby supports Ruby language features, is quite high.
The interview contains a lot of information, eg. IronRuby is capable of running realworld Rails applications. Complications, however, can result when these apps are run against SQLServer because their SQL code is written against MySQL. Other topics include IronRuby's strategy for running Ruby code (interpretation vs. compilation - interpretation is used for quick startup, but ultimately code is JITed to MSIL), the DLR and more.

In other Ruby VM news, JRuby 1.3.1 was released (JRuby Download). All JRuby 1.3 users are advised to uprade to 1.3.1 as it fixes a bug introduced in 1.3, and also a recently discovered DoS in BigDecimal.

MacRuby also continues to improve (latest status update). Everyone interested in MacRuby or Ruby on the Mac, will find the videos from the recent Ruby on OS X Conference useful.

GemStone's MagLev Ruby VM is heading towards a broader release sometime in late Q2 or Q3. A recent tweet mentions a new improvement:

Uploading MagLev 21782 for Alpha testers. Contains initial native parser implementation, but it's not yet isolated into its own environment.

MagLev's previous approach to parsing Ruby code was to use an instance of MRI that parses the Ruby code and turns it into a ParseTree s-expr.

Finally, Brian Ford was interviewed about RubySpec, the huge set of specs that is crucial for all alternative Ruby implementations.

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