Pattern 28Register-Based Bytecode Interpreter


This pattern executes bytecode instructions that store function parameters, local variables, and temporary values in simulated registers.


A register-based bytecode interpreter is identical to a stack-based interpreter except for the instruction set and where it keeps local variables, parameters, return values, and any temporary values. The instructions use registers instead of an operand stack. Our simulated machine gives each stack frame an “infinite” set of registers.

Table 9. Register-based arithmetic bytecode instructions



iadd ri, rj, rk isub ri, rj, rk imul ri, rj, rk

Arithmetic operators for integers. rk=ri op rj

fadd ri, rj, rk fsub ri, rj, rk fmul ri, ...

Get Language Implementation Patterns now with O’Reilly online learning.

O’Reilly members experience live online training, plus books, videos, and digital content from 200+ publishers.