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Re: [Axiom-developer] Community

From: Gabriel Dos Reis
Subject: Re: [Axiom-developer] Community
Date: Sun, 20 May 2007 06:42:56 -0500 (CDT)

On Sat, 19 May 2007, C Y wrote:

| > I however have fundamental objections to any move to burry Axiom
| > deeper into a second class build system, and second class galaxy.
| I may be alone in this, but I don't view Lisp as "second class."  It is
| a language with a long usage history, particularly in the domain of
| problem we happen to be working on.  Someone on the list described it
| as "assembly code" - that's actually not a bad thing in some
| situations, and for others (like SPAD for mathematics) Lisp is
| excellent for implementing languages to meet specific problem domains
| (I believe Paradigms of AI Programming, one of the major lisp
| references, illustrates that.)

I think I can claim the assembly language characterization and I stand
by it.  For lot of people, it has become a marginal language.

Colleagues I have high estimes for recently asked me "why are you
buring your time and work in an antique language no light came from for 
over half a century?".  
I don't think they are ignorant; on the contrary, they have unmatched
understanding of programming languages, academic and industrial needs and
issues, educations.

Think about it: Lisp and derivatives have "own" academic institutions for over
half a century, yet...


| > Please give a thought to why we don't seem to attract new blood to
| > Axiom.  It is not that it is that difficult.  I've seen new blood in
| > the more challenging and difficult GCC system. 
| GCC is very general purpose (and widely depended upon), and equally
| important perhaps it is very widely known.  Without GCC free software
| as we know it wouldn't exist.  That attracts attention.

I don't believe that suffices to explain it.


| Shaking our reputation as "the hard CAS" would probably do the most
| good as far as attracting people, but I'm not sure how practical that
| is.

Currently, I would think we are closer to the guys who constantly rewrite the
old stuff without making progress; that hardly attracts new blood, research

-- Gaby

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