virgil: A Fast and Lightweight Programming Language
Virgil is a programming language designed for fast, dependency-free programs. Its design blends functional and object-oriented programming paradigms for expressiveness without a lot of overhead, either syntactically or at runtime. Its implementation is focused primarily on static compilation to produce native executables that are standalone. It is well-suited to writing small and fast programs. That makes it ideal for building certain kinds of programs like compilers and virtual machines. It is currently being used for virtual machine and programming language research.
This repository includes the entire compiler, runtime system, some libraries, tests, and supporting code for Virgil's various compilation targets.
Virgil focuses on balancing these main features in a statically-typed language:
- Classes - for basic object-oriented programming
- Functions - for small-scale reuse of functionality
- Tuples - for efficient aggregation and uniform treatment of multi-argument functions
- Type parameters - for powerful and clean abstraction over types
- Algebraic data types - for easy building and matching of data structures
Virgil can compile to x86 binaries for Linux or Darwin, to jar files for the JVM, or to WebAssembly. Linux binaries can run successfully under Windows using Window's Linux system call layer.
- x86-darwin : 32-bit Darwin kernels (MacOS)
- x86-linux : 32-bit Linux kernels
- x86-64-linux : 64-bit Linux kernels
- jar : JAR files for the Java Virtual Machine
- wasm : WebAssembly module for any Wasm engine
Virgil is fully self-hosted: its entire compiler and runtime system is implemented in Virgil. The compiler can bootstrap (i.e. compile itself and all runtime code) on any of the target platforms. Native binaries compiled from your programs can be as small as a few hundred bytes in size and consume just kilobytes of memory at runtime.
The most up-to-date documentation is, as always, the implementation in this repository!
A basic wiki is available, though not all new features are covered. Virgil now supports algebraic data types, enums, and floating point.
There are lots of example programs in doc/tutorial.
Five research papers have been published on Virgil.
Ben L. Titzer. Harmonizing Classes, Functions, Tuples and Type Parameters in Virgil III. In Proceedings of the ACM Conference on Programming Language Design and Implementation (PLDI '13). San Diego, CA. June 2013.
Stephen Kou and Jens Palsberg. From OO to FPGA: Fitting round objects into square hardware? In Proceedings of the ACM Conference on Object-Oriented Programming Systems, Languages and Applications (OOPSLA '10). Reno, Nevada, 2010.
Ben L. Titzer and Jens Palsberg. Vertical Object Layout and Compression for Fixed Heaps. In Semantics and Algebra Specification. Pp. 376-408. 2009.
Ben L. Titzer and Jens Palsberg. Vertical Object Layout and Compression for Fixed Heaps. In Proceedings of the International Conference on Compilers, Architecture, and Synthesis for Embedded Systems (CASES ’07). Salzburg, Austria. October 2007.
Ben L. Titzer. Virgil: Objects on the Head of a Pin. In Proceedings of the 21 st Annual Conference on Object-Oriented Systems, Languages, and Applications (OOPSLA '06). October 2006.