Petalisp: Elegant High Performance Computing

Petalisp is a specialized extension of Common Lisp that aims to generate high performance code for parallel computers. While not a full programming language, Petalisp allows for extreme optimization and parallelization. To get started, users must install Lisp and a suitable IDE, with Portacle being a recommended option. Petalisp can be downloaded via Quicklisp, and users can explore examples to understand how programming with Petalisp works. The showcased examples, such as matrix transposition and matrix-matrix multiplication, give a glimpse of what programming with Petalisp entails. The FAQ section addresses questions about Petalisp’s similarity to NumPy and the availability of Python bindings. Petalisp is licensed under AGPL, with the intention of promoting open collaboration in software development. The use of Common Lisp in Petalisp is praised for its rich features, speed, safety, and excellent community support. The author also highlights a clever implementation of a JIT-compiler in Common Lisp, which outperforms GCC and Clang for similar C code.

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