02 Feb 2012

Racket v5.2.1

posted by Eli Barzilay

Racket version 5.2.1 is now available from http://racket-lang.org/ Release Highlights::

  • Performance improvements include the use of epoll()/kqueue() instead of select() for the Racket thread scheduler, cross-module inlining of small functions, and the use of SSE instead of x87 for JIT-compiled floating-point operations on platforms where SSE is always available (including x86_64 platforms). A related change is the interning of literal numbers, strings, byte strings, characters, and regexps that appear in code and syntax objects.

  • DrRacket uses a set of composable ray-traced icons available from the new images library collection.

  • Typed Racket’s typecheck-fail form allows macro creators to customize the error messages that Typed Racket produces. This is especially useful when creating pattern matching macros.

  • The performance of Redex’s matcher has been substantially improved; depending on the model you should see improvements between 2x and 50x in the time it takes to reduce terms.

  • Plots look nicer and are more correct at very small and very large scales. New features include customizable dual axis ticks and transforms (e.g., log axes, date and currency ticks, axis interval collapse and stretch), stacked histograms, and 3D vector fields. The legacy fit function and libfit have been removed.

  • The 2htdp/universe library’s big-bang form supports an experimental game pad key handler.

  • The db library now supports nested transactions and PostgreSQL arrays. Bugs involving MySQL authentication and memory corruption in the SQLite bindings have been fixed.

  • The Macro Stepper tool in DrRacket no longer executes a program after expanding it.

  • In the DMdA teaching languages, infinite recursive signatures (“streams”, for example) with no intervening mixed are now supported, and the signatures of record definitions without fields now have generators for use with property.

  • MysterX’s ActiveX support is deprecated and will be removed in the next release. MysterX’s core COM functionality will become deprecated in the next release, but COM functionality will be supported for the foreseeable future as a compatibility layer over a forthcoming ffi/com library.

What is your opinion of Clojure?

Owen, 2 February 2012

I just compiled and installed the new racket release on my linux laptop! Racket’s great! The performance seems to be much better than in previous versions and DrRacket IDE has improved much! Thanks!

Axel S., 7 February 2012

On Windows 7 with both the 32-bit and 64-bit installers, DrRacket can’t run due to this error:

read-bitmap: expects type as 1st argument, given: ’#(# 270 270); other arguments were: ’unknown/alpha #f #t

(The problem shows up for the new 5.2.1, but not on with 5.2 version.)

Dan, 26 March 2012

This is a bug that we are currently working on. Full message can be found here.

Eli Barzilay, 26 March 2012

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