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Cardinal - Ruby for the Parrot VM

Cardinal is a Ruby compiler for Parrot Virtual Machine.

The parser is fairly complete. The standard library exists, but still needs filling out.

Cardinal's parser is very very slow. You can precompile to PIR with –target=pir and run the result with Parrot directly to skip the parsing phase. (You may need cardinal.pbc in the same directory for this to work.)

Getting Started with Cardinal

Downloding Cardinal

Get a copy of Cardinal(read only):

git clone git://

Build with Rake

After obtaining the source code, run:

rake cardinal

To run some tests run:

rake test:all
rake test:[name]

You might get all rake tasks with:

rake -T

Build with Parrot

You can also build cardinal with Parrot:

parrot setup.pir


parrot setup.pir test

Note that some of them will probably fail, as Cardinal is not yet complete

If you want to install Cardinal to your Parrot install directory, run:

parrot setup.pir install

The compiler will be available as parrot-cardinal


Follow the documentations to start developing cardinal.

Latest Parrot Documentation

Parrot Babysteps

Cardinal is back in active development, under the stewardship of Ted Reed <>.

We also have an IRC channel: #cardinal on

You are also invited to #parrot on

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