I’ve been trying different scripting languages out lately. I wanted to try using a Lisp-like scripting language where I would normally have used Python. But experiments with Racket disappointed me, it seems very slow to start. So I decided to benchmark how long it takes to display the famous “Hello, world” string and quit in various languages.
I even threw in SBCL and Clozure Common Lisp for comparison. Here’s a graph showing how they all did on my Macbook Pro:
As you can see, I was right to be disappointed with Racket. Even SBCL, which does high-quality native code compilation is more than 10 times faster. In my opinion, paying more than a few milliseconds to start executing a script is not acceptable on today’s hardware. Here are the full timings in a table for your browsing pleasure: