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Programming for the Java™ Virtual Machine by Joshua Engel

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Chapter 11. Compiling Other Languages

One of the best uses for Java virtual machine programming is translating languages other than Java into virtual machine code. Compiled programs run faster than interpreted ones, and compilers are often easier to write than interpreters. By taking advantage of the JVM's built-in debugging features, you can even use standard debuggers for your new language.

There are many different kinds of languages. Some are complete in the sense that they are powerful enough to write programs for any computation. In this sense, Java, C, Lisp, and Basic are all complete. Completeness in this sense refers to the ability of a language to compute mathematical functions, not to its ability to manipulate hardware (such as graphics) ...

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