Slime tidbits (2010-03-06): Slime & ECL

Together with Juan Jose Garcia-Ripoll, I worked on improving the integration of ECL into Slime.

He did a tremendous job on the ECL side adding all the stuff that's needed for a well-working swank backend, so if you're going to try out ECL with Slime, and are pleasantly surprised, please direct most of the gratitude towards him.

I threw out backwards compatibility, and you really have to get the 10.3.1 release otherwise the CVS of Slime will refuse to compile. There's no point in artificially maintaining backwards compatibility for something which barely worked.

Most noteworthy is the fact that you can now M-. all the way down, that is not just into the Lisp source base of ECL, but also into the C source base. And because it's based on TAGS file, M-. (and M-*) will continue to work once in a .c file. For illustration, I created an animated screenshot. (Blogspot seems to convert uploaded images into the PNG format which is the reason that I have to externally link to animated gifs rather than include them into by blog posting proper.)

There's of course still stuff to do:
  • storing arglist information for user-written functions
  • storing source-location information for each method of a gf
  • introspection into C objects
Especially the last thing would be rather cool. And while I think the first two items are on Juanjo's agenda, the last item needs some brave hero looking for fame and glory. In case you want to volunteer, drop a mail to the ECL mailing list!


Juanjo said...

Thanks a lot for this post and also for all the work in the Swank/ECL backend. It was very valuable not only your contributions but also your insight on things that were missing to improve ECL's usability!

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