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More On That Multimedia Programming Language

October 4th, 2005 by Multimedia Mike

I move swiftly from project to project and I know some readers are hoping that I succinctly forget about this multimedia programming language idea. Just a few more thoughts:

Matthieu Castet tipped me off that gcc 4 actually offers vector data type extensions. The concept is to declare and use vector data types in such a way that the compiler will understand how to transform them into SIMD instructions (MMX, SSE2, Altivec, et al). Please forgive my skepticism regarding how well this could possibly work. I do not begrudge the gcc developers for their roles; I know it’s a tough duty and I appreciate that gcc works across so many different CPU architectures. However, one area of gcc that seems to break down with inordinate regularity is optimization along with C/ASM code intermingling.

One item that I did not make clear in my first post about the language is driving motivation. The idea is to take something that resembles an ISO-style spec and compile it directly. Have you ever looked at a formal ISO spec? Probably not an official one, but chances are that if you have been working on multimedia tech for any period of time you have at least seen ISO draft documents floating around on the internet. Generally, they are impenetrable but also highly programmatic. I think it would be useful to compile the specs directly.

Maybe I am thinking of some literate programming variation.

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