Past Meetup

PWL #48: One VM to Rule Them All

This Meetup is past

64 people went

Every 1st Thursday of the month

Microsoft Reactor Westlake

320 Westlake Ave N 4th floor · Seattle, WA

How to find us

Just take the elevator to the 4th Floor!

Location image of event venue


• What we'll do
PWL mini:
Maybe you!!!

Main Event:
One VM to Rule Them All by Brandon Bloom

Download and try Graal (; you can call back and forth between Java, R, Python, Ruby, etc!


Building high-performance virtual machines is a complex
and expensive undertaking; many popular languages still
have low-performance implementations. We describe a new
approach to virtual machine (VM) construction that amor-
tizes much of the effort in initial construction by allowing
new languages to be implemented with modest additional
effort. The approach relies on abstract syntax tree (AST) in-
terpretation where a node can rewrite itself to a more special-
ized or more general node, together with an optimizing com-
piler that exploits the structure of the interpreter. The com-
piler uses speculative assumptions and deoptimization in or-
der to produce efficient machine code. Our initial experience
suggests that high performance is attainable while preserv-
ing a modular and layered architecture, and that new high-
performance language implementations can be obtained by
writing little more than a stylized interpreter.

Brandon's Bio

Brandon Bloom walks a fine line between laser focused pragmatism and broad academic interests. Most recently in his varied career, Brandon worked on's Hour Of Code campaign. In the past, he's founded and sold a startup, as well as worked on Microsoft Xbox and Google Translate. Now, he's indulging his inner scientist and exploring technology for his next venture. Find him on the web at < >.

Dinner will be provided! We usually eat between 6:30 and 7:00, with papers starting at 7.

• Important to know

Big ups to Microsoft Reactor for hosting this month!

As a chapter of Papers We Love we abide by and enforce the PWL Code of Conduct ( at our events. Please give it a read, plan on acting like an adult, and involve one of the organizers if you need help.

Stop slacking and join us in the #seattle channel at!

If you have a paper you'd like to present, or even just a mini, please hit up one of the organizers :) We're always looking for more presenters.