MetaOCaml Server Pages

This is the code described in my research paper in Science of Computer Programming 62(1). It should be considered alpha quality, and at this time is mainly intended for other researchers, not for production use. See the README file for (sketchy) instructions on how to build it. You will need MetaOCaml and SML/NJ.


This program is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of the GNU General Public License as published by the Free Software Foundation; either version 2 of the License, or (at your option) any later version.

This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. See the GNU General Public License for more details.


Modern dynamic web services are really computer programs. Some parts of these programs run off-line, others run server-side on each request, and still others run within the browser. In other words, web publishing is staged computation, either for better performance, or because certain resources are available in one stage but not another. Unfortunately, the various web programming languages make it difficult to spread computation over more than one stage. This is a tremendous opportunity for multi-stage languages in general, and for MetaOCaml in particular.

We present the design of MetaOCaml Server Pages. Unlike other languages in its genre, the embedded MetaOCaml code blocks may be annotated with staging information, so that the programmer may safely and precisely control which computation occurs in which stage. A prototype web server, written in OCaml, supports web sites with both static and dynamic content. We provide several sample programs and demonstrate the performance gains won using multi-stage programming.

©20022015 Christopher League