[Nickle] Preliminary foreign function interface released in nickle 2.45

Keith Packard keithp at keithp.com
Fri Dec 24 01:27:57 PST 2004

I wanted to let other people see and touch the minimal foreign function 
interface mechanism I added as needed to support a nickle binding for the 
cairo graphics system, so I went ahead and released nickle 2.45 to include 
this code.

I don't precisely know how this minimal FFI implementation will relate to 
what we'd really like to have, but experiences with binding mechanisms 
that other languages use implies that this low level manual interface will 
occasionally be needed even if we can manage to build a more automated 
interface on top of it.

The current interface allows for the dynamic creation of new types, 
namespaces, functions and other variables.  The one missing piece is an 
ability to create new exceptions that can be signalled from foreign code.  
The existing standard exception mechansim has no provision for new 
exceptions, so some rework will be required here.


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