>  "Ruby is over 10 years old, very popular in Japan, gaining popularity 
> in
> other parts of the world, have thousands of users and hundreds of 
> hackers.
> However, the implementation (Ruby has only 1 currently, written in C) 
> is
> pretty weak. It's slow, does not support native threads, does not do 
> JIT
> compilation (not even bytecode), needs a better GC, etc. It is 
> especially so
> if we compare it with Java and Smalltalk, who have gotten real good
> implementations (JIT compilers, fast GC, threads, etc) nowadays."

Two thoughts on this:

1. Matz has discussed on this list what is expected to be handled in 
1.9 and 2.0. 1.9 will reimplement the interpreter. Matz anticipates a 2 
to 3 times speed increase from doing this. 1.9 will also include 
built-in support for multi-byte characters and will deal with the 
scoping of variables within blocks. 2.0 will introduce a Ruby virtual 
machine with byte-code compilation. Parrot will be an independent 
virtual machine for Ruby, Perl and Python (and maybe more?).

2. The comment is the other side of the coin, so to speak, in relation 
to what Matz was talking about in the interview. Matz has been focused 
on the human interaction with the language because he thinks its the 
most important part. The comment focuses on the language's interaction 
with the hardware, which is considered less important by Matz. But it 
certainly is not being ignored.

Regards,

Mark