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Programming for the Java™ Virtual Machine by Joshua Engel

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Chapter 10. Compiling Java

The Java virtual machine was originally designed to run programs written in Java. A Java compiler translates Java programs into class files, which can be executed on any JVM implementation. Although the JVM is equipped with sufficient instructions to handle any language, many instructions are particularly well suited to Java. In particular, it is always possible to compile any valid Java program into a JVM class file that will pass the verification algorithm's checks.

This chapter discusses how Java programs are converted into JVM programs. We look at Java programs from the point of view of a Java compiler (or a Java compiler writer). A complete definition of the Java language in terms of the JVM would stretch to hundreds ...

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