LISP Running on OLPC (One Laptop Per Child)

By | December 29, 2007

After a couple of glasses of red wine tonight, I decided I would try and get a JVM and LISP, in the form of Rich Hickey’s Clojure language, running on my OLPC.

Downloading a JVM was simple, and it installed quickly, once I worked out that the OLPC software saves large files that it doesn’t understand into /tmp.

I then tried several times to download the Clojure distribution, but I never managed to find where mozilla was putting the .zip file. Anyway, I was able to unzip it by opening the file in etoys which has the first decent file selector I’ve seen on the OLPC.

Once Clojure is unzipped, it can be run simply by running ‘java’ against the clojure.jar file. Expressions typed at the repl, or loaded are compiled by Clojure, then JITed by the java runtime, which (and I can vouch for this) gives extreme performance that is more than up to the task of moving multithousand line datasets around even before your finger is off the enter key.

Anyways, here’s a couple of shots of Clojure running on the latest JRE on my OLPC:

Clojure on OLPC

Clojure on OLPC

It seems like a lot of people have been worried about getting java up and running, but downloading it from (See Linux Self-extracting file) worked just fine. ;-)

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