Engineering a simple, efficient code-generator generator

Christopher W. Fraser, David R. Hanson, Todd A Proebsting

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

129 Scopus citations


Many code-generator generators use tree pattern matching and dynamic programming. This paper describes a simple program that generates matchers that are fast, compact, and easy to understand. It is simpler than common alternatives: 200-700 lines of Icon or 950 lines of C versus 3000 lines of C for Twig and 5000 for burg. Its matchers run up to 25 times faster than Twig's. They are necessarily slower than burg's BURS (bottom-up rewrite system) matchers, but they are more flexible and still practical.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)213-226
Number of pages14
JournalACM letters on programming languages and systems
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Sep 1992


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Engineering(all)

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