Higher-Order and Symbolic Computation

, Volume 18, Issue 3–4, pp 271–298 | Cite as

BIT: A Very Compact Scheme System for Microcontrollers



We present a compact implementation of Scheme for microcontrollers that includes a real-time garbage collector. The compiler runs on a normal workstation and produces byte-code from the source program. A smart linker links the byte-code with the runtime module. We demonstrate that with this system it is clearly possible to run realistic Scheme programs on a microcontroller with as little as 3 to 4 KB of RAM. Programs that access the whole Scheme library require only 13 KB of ROM. As a byproduct of this research, we designed a novel space-efficient real-time GC algorithm.


Scheme language microcontroller embedded system byte-code real-time garbage collection 



garbage collector


random-access memory


read-only memory


non-volatile random-access memory


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Copyright information

© Springer Science + Business Media, Inc. 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Département d'informatique et de génie logicielUniversité LavalSainte-FoyCanada
  2. 2.Département d'informatique et de recherche opérationnelleUniversité de MontréalMontréalCanada

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