Thu 18 Jul 2019 13:55 - 14:20 at Epernay - Session #2 Chair(s): Daryl Maier

The Simple Object Machine (SOM) can be traced back to Aarhus in 2001. Since then it has been used in various places to teach students about language implementation techniques and to do research on optimizations, tooling, and language features.

The Simple in the name was key to enabling much of this work. It allowed experimentation with various implementation languages as well as language implementation frameworks. It also enabled experiments with optimizations such as zero-overhead run-time metaprogramming, powerful metaobject protocols, efficient implementations of various concurrency models, and debuggers that can support all these features seamlessly. Even industry got curious about the Simple: IBM used SOM to showcase their Eclipse OMR framework for garbage collection and just-in-time compilation.

This talk focuses on SOM, how it is used for research, and its potential for teaching. I’ll try to convince you that SOM, while being a small object-oriented language, is fully equipped to do cutting edge research. At the same time, I’ll argue that it is a great platform to teach language implementation techniques, good software engineering, and programming practices.