[Haskell-cafe] Partial Evaluation

Jeff Polakow jeff.polakow at db.com
Wed Mar 21 15:03:57 EDT 2007


Partial evaluation in this context (programming languages research) 
usually refers to "compile time" optimization techniques such as 
statically evaluating as much of a function as possible (e.g. going into 
the function body and evaluating as much as possible that doesn't depend 
on the function arguments) and various syntactic transformations to 
improve run-time efficiency. You can find lots of information about this 
topic at: http://partial-eval.org.


haskell-cafe-bounces at haskell.org wrote on 03/21/2007 02:47:28 PM:

> I am reading Hudak's paper Modular Domain Specific Languages and Tools 
> [1] and am confused by his use of the term `Partial Evaluation'. I 
> understand it to mean supplying some but not all arguments to a 
> function, e.g. (+3) but it seems to mean something else too. This is in 
> the context of optimising performance:
> "We have used existing partial evaluation techniques to do 
> this...Unfortunately, there does not currently exist a suitable, 
> easy-to-use partial evaluator for Haskell. Our approach was to convert 
> the Haskell program to Scheme, partially evaluate the Scheme program, 
> and then translate back into Haskell."
> What does P.E, mean here?
> Thanks,
> [1] Available 
> http://wiki.ittc.ku.edu/lambda/Image:Hudak-
> Modular_Domain_Specific_Languages_and_Tools.pdf 
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