Optimization & Destructive Updates

Robin Bate Boerop robin_bb at acm.org
Fri Apr 14 13:12:55 EDT 2006

I am interested in better understanding what optimizations of this  
sort GHC performs.  I second Lajos's question.

I sometimes write code using StateMonad, and expect some destructive  
updates.  Judging by the performance of the resulting executable, the  
updates are nondestructive.  (But, no, I haven't verified this by  
examining the object code.)

Robin Bate Boerop

On 14-Apr-06, at 12:25 PM, Lajos Nagy wrote:

> I was just musing the other day about the possibility of allowing  
> (efficient and transparent) destructive updates in certain  
> situations. Take the following (giberish) example:
> f xs = g xs []
>   where g [] ac = ac
>         g (x1:x2:xs) ac = g xs (ac ++ [x2,x1])
> It seems to me that the list concatenation in the tail recursion  
> call can be safely performed destructively.  Does anybody know  
> about any research going on in this area?  (Mind you: no linear  
> types, no monads, only `under the hood' compiler optimization.)
> I'm aware of the fact that this would imply another kind of  
> overloading (destructive vs. non-destructive) for functions which  
> also seems an interesting research area.
> Regards,
> -- Lajos Nagy
> Computer Science Ph.D. Student,  Florida Institute of Technology
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