The Direct-Execution Architecture is a language-directed computer architecture. It can accept a highlevel-language program and directly executes it without compilation, assembly, linkage editing or loading. It offers a means to eliminate compilers, loaders etc. and attacks the problem of mounting software cost. In addition, the advent of microprocessors has demonstrated that highly complex digital hardware can be built reliably and inexpensively. Using this hardware to implement the Direct-Execution Architecture redistributes apportionment of costs between the hardware and software. The paper surveys the Direct-Execution Architecture, presents the relationship between language and architecture, and explains how a Direct-Execution system works. It also brings up the use of Direct-Execution for a highly interactive program writing, debugging, execution system. With this system, program writing could proceed like English composition. This paper then discusses the issue of a single high-level machine language, and the potential role of the interpreters. Finally, it attempts to fortell what could happen to the Direct-Execution Architecture in the next five to 10 years.
SIGARCH Comput. Archit. News