Hacker News new | comments | show | ask | jobs | submit login

I have been working on [1] a Lua library that can implement all the functionality to do what is needed to bring up a Linux userspace. I should have a very minimal bootable environment very soon, as I have enough of the network tools, mount and so on implemented to put it together. There is not really intended to be a shell and command line tools though, it is just a library but you could have a REPL console. I am more interested in easily creating small system images to run single applications in, see [2] for rationale, building small testable whole system images that are quick to rebuild. Planning to use Musl libc [3] which is small and easy to debug so you can easily follow what is going on, plus the whole userspace will be BSD licensed.

[1] https://github.com/justincormack/ljsyscall [2] http://www.myriabit.com/ljsyscall/ [3] http://www.etalabs.net/musl/

Neat ideas, I hope you continue to make good progress! I'm reminded of LuaOS, of course: http://luaos.net/

As an 8-bit nerd I'd love to return to the days when there was, basically, just one language onboard the computer, and all vendors just used it. :) LuaOS is a cute way to achieve this, as is your efforts too, if I understand you properly.

Of course such an idea is not so foreign in the embedded sphere, where there are plenty of appliances whose LCD interface are little more than a PUTS/GETS in some shell script, but there is some merit to the idea that the ethos of a single-system-language-onboard as an Open Source target may well be worth a serious effort. I'd love to have a new Tablet paradigm where the entire thing is LuaOS and such things as MOAI are easily onboard as well .. it could represent a brave new effort against the Walled Garden Wars we're seeing ..

> As an 8-bit nerd I'd love to return to the days when there was, basically, just one language onboard the computer, and all vendors just used it. :)

Oh, like a Lisp machine. ;)

(Be careful what you wish for, though; the 'one language to rule them all' world was essentially why ADVENT was written in FORTRAN of all languages.)

(Also: Was it ever just one language? Eight-bit systems always had BASIC and assembly language; for a lot of tasks, assembly language was pretty much it, unless you bought a Pascal compiler or something. Lisp machines had Lisp written in the normal way, Lisp written in an obscure way to improve performance, and microcode. Even old AS/400 systems had COBOL and RPG, which is rather a pick-your-poison dilemma but the choice was there.)

Symbolics had C, Fortran, Pascal, Ada and Prolog implementations. The promised benefit of a single-language userspace is in simplifying the tools and debugging and/or making them more powerful. The Linux ABI, ELF, DWARF, linkers, make, and all the awful POSIX stuff is huge and hugely complicated, but you don't really get a lot for it. The other alternative are systems like Plan 9 and software from http://suckless.org/

Well, native assembler is always (hopefully?) going to be a given in any serious architecture decision, so it'd be something like:

languages_onboard ={} lanuages_onboard[0]="assembly" lanuages_onboard[1]="lua" -- .. &etc.

Like busybox on Lua? Sounds interesting

Guidelines | FAQ | Support | API | Security | Lists | Bookmarklet | DMCA | Apply to YC | Contact