Instructor: Jeremy Siek
Welcome to the half-day tutorial for Essentials of Compilation (EoC)!
This tutorial introduces the participants to the joys of teaching and learning about compilers using the incremental approach. The tutorial provides a sneak-preview of a compiler course based on the new textbooks from MIT Press:
PDFs for the books are available for free from my web page:
The EoC textbook and course takes students on a journey through constructing their own compiler for a small but powerful language. The standard approach to describing and teaching compilers is to proceed one pass at a time, from the front to the back of the compiler. Unfortunately, that approach obfuscates how language features motivate design choices in a compiler. In the EoC course we instead take an incremental approach in which we build a complete compiler every two weeks, starting with a small input language that includes only arithmetic and variables. We add new language features in subsequent iterations, extending the compiler as necessary. Student get immediate positive feedback as they see their compiler passing test cases and then learn important lessons regarding software engineering as they grow and refactor their compiler throughout the semester.
The first half of the tutorial will provide an overview of the EoC course and textbook with plenty of time for questions and answers.
The second half of the tutorial will be a hands-on activity in which the tutorial participants implement one of the compiler passes described in the Chapter 2 of the book: the “Remove Complex Operands” pass. The activity can be completed in either
Please make sure to have one of them installed on your laptop.
Download the EoC supporting code from github:
compiler.py is the skeleton code for your compiler.
The goal will be to fill in the method
You can test your implementation of
running the test script:
Go ahead and run the script right away. It should tell you that 0 out of 3 tests passed:
tests: 0/3 for compiler var on language var
It ran your incomplete compiler on the three test programs in the
tests/var/ directory. You are encouraged to add more test programs.
The script also reports that 0 of 0 passes succeeded.
passes: 0/0 for compiler var on language var
The script runs an intepreter on the intermediate programs produced by
each pass of your compiler to check whether they have the same result
as the source program. Once you have implemented the
remove_complex_operands method, the script will say that
compiler.rkt is the skeleton code for your compiler.
The goal will be to fill in the function
You can test your implementation of the
function by running the test script:
Go ahead and run the script right away. It should tell you that 9 tests passed:
9 success(es) 0 failure(s) 0 error(s) 9 test(s) run
There are three test programs for the
var language in the
subdirectory, and the script includes three things by default in the
“success” count for each test program, including type checking and
running the interpreter on the source program.
The script runs an intepreter on the intermediate programs produced by each pass of your compiler to check whether they have the same result as the source program.
Once you have implemented the
uncomment the line for
remove complex opera* in the
compiler-passes list at the end of
compiler.rkt. Run the script
again and it should report
18 success(es) 0 failure(s) 0 error(s) 18 test(s) run