Playing around with Lua is fun, but I've been hearing some good
things about LuaJIT, a
“just in time” compiler for Lua for the x86 platform (written by a single
guy, no less!). Even more amazing, it's literally a drop in replacement for
Lua (both the command line interpreter and library).
Okay, I'm willing to give this a try. I download, compile and install it.
I then decide to test it using jumble
program I wrote in Lua. All I need to do is change one line:
and rerun the program.
Lua version of Jumble program
|version||time in seconds|
|pure Lua ||7.74|
|Lua + C ||2.06|
|LuaJIT + C ||1.70|
LuaJIT easily trounces the Lua interpreter without any code changes
(other than specifying a different “interpreter”). The versions with C
use a C function to sort the letters in the word and while LuaJIT was faster
than the Lua + C version, the very fact that I didn't have to modify any
code is fantastic! LuaJIT used the very same C code as the Lua
version—no changes or recompilations required!
I just relinked my Lua daemon
against LuaJIT, just to test it out, and yes, it worked without any changes.
I could even reload the scripts on the fly. And incredibly, it's only about
50% bigger than Lua itself.
LuaJIT is one sweet piece of technology.
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