Parrot releases continue to come out once a month. Version 0.5.2 was released in January. The highlight of 0.5.2 for many is surely the inclusion of a perl6 make target, meaning that you can now take a Parrot release and make yourself a Perl 6 binary in just three easy steps:
* tar -xvzf parrot-x.x.x.tar.gz
* cd parrot-x.x.x
* perl ./Configure.pl
* make perl6
The end result is a perl6 binary that you can use to play with Perl 6 code. Obviously, this is not a complete Perl 6 implementation yet, but hopefully this will encourage more casual experimentation from folks who might've been intimidated by a more complex process.
The 0.5.2 release also includes improvements to the Perl 6 implementation, as well as other language improvements.
The 0.5.3 in February featured even more Perl 6 improvements, as well as refactorings of many language implementations to use the latest tools in the Parrot Compiler Toolkit.
As part of the 0.5.3 release, the Perl 6 implementation team announced that the Parrot implementation of Perl 6 would henceforth be known as "Rakudo", which is a Japanese word meaning "way of the camel". Patrick Michaud wrote more about this in his "use Perl journal":http://use.perl.org/~pmichaud/journal/35400.
Jerry Gay has also been "writing about his Perl 6 work":http://use.perl.org/~particle/journal/ in his use Perl journal.
Allison has been busy on the design side, completing the garbage collection (PDD09) and security model (PDD18) designs. On the implementation side, chromatic and Allison completed the initial implementation of PMCs (core data types). Jonathan Worthington completed the initial implementation of bytecode handling for Parrot.
Unfortunately, Patrick Michaud was not able to complete the design work for the compiler tools as scheduled for February 1. Patrick's wife was recently diagnosed with ovarian cancer, and taking care of his wife and family is his number one priority. "Patrick wrote about this":http://use.perl.org/~pmichaud/journal/35389 in his use Perl journal in January.
However, Patrick did complete initial implementation work on the compiler toolkit, for which we will issue a milestone payment. He is continuing to work on Parrot and Perl 6, though at a slower pace. Recently, Patrick spoke about Parrot at FOSDEM. Allison has also been doing the conference circuit, speaking at SCALE and the Frozen Perl Workshop.
Parrot has been getting some buzz in the blogosophere recently. Simon Cozens wrote about "his (positive) experiences with the Parrot Compiler Toolkit":http://blog.simon-cozens.org/post/view/1323. Ted Neward wrote about "building Parrot on Windows":http://blogs.tedneward.com/2008/02/03/My+Secret+Shame+Or+Building+Parrot+052.aspx.
We will be issuing payments for a number of milestones after TPF receives the second half of the grant funds from NLNet. Jonathan Worthington will receive a payment for his bytecode implementation. chromatic will split a payment with Allison for the PMC implementation. Patrick Michaud will receive a payment for implementation of the compiler tools. Additionally, Allison will receive two more payments for her design work. As usual, Allison's payments will be set aside to help fund her Parrot work.