Yesterday i gave my PyPy status/mobile perspectives at OpenBossa, Nokia's developer conference for embedded platforms in Brazil. Found it a bit of a tough task to do that in 50 minutes. I had some 50, later more developers attending the talk and was happy with the questions and the feedback. Guess it's a good sign if the number of people grows during a talk :) It was the first time i tried to work more with pictures and actually used some devianart photos from Marikaz to mark section transitions. I summarize/highlight some key points here in the post.
After intro and 2.5 compatibility status, i talked about our measurements of PyPy's Python on Nokia's N810 internet tablet. The best bit is that for almost all Python data structures PyPy has smaller memory representations than CPython. Particularly good are class instances which often score at 50% of CPython's sizes. Startup time is also often better and can be improved. On the bad side, PyPy's quite large base interpreter size and its bytecode execution is often worse. In the talk i also outline ideas for "perfect PYC files" for minimizing module import times and maximizing sharing across interpreter processes. I also briefly discussed the PyPy situation with extension modules and regarding C++ libs. Most of these ideas arose from sprint discussions last year. In the morning i also had some good talk with Stefan Seefeld about Boost Python and the new QT4 bindings. Maybe to use Boost Python is also a good opportunity - but PyPy does not currently have a C-level or C++ level API.
In subsequent lunch discussions people agreed that PyPy has three main interesting areas currently:
- the Python Just-In-Time Compiler
- a virtualized, sandboxed Python interpreter
- an efficient Python interpreter for small devices
I think our upcoming 1.1 release will be a good point in time for many people to look some more into PyPy. I hope we are crossing the chasm soon. It's been a while since the project started :) Getting some more sponsoring to sustain and increase our current efforts probably wouldn't hurt.
Now i am off to spend my last day in Recife / Brazil, fly back to Germany in the evening and then spend time on preparing for Pycon 2009. And I guess i am going to enjoy some naturally cold air - at least my two jogging sessions at Brazillian beaches, at a sustained 30 degrees celsius, were tough. I guess i shouldn't complain, though :)
Was great meeting all the brazillian guys and the few women - just had breakfeast with Kate Alhola, kernel hacker and working on the new "Freemantle" graphical platform. Many thanks go to Marcio Marcedo and the Python team at INDT who invited me here. Hope to come again next year and eventually talk more about the Zone VM :)
If you are interested in some more not so pypy-specific bits about the conference and what i experienced, you might head over to my tetamap blog.