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Re: [Axiom-developer] Lisp portability

From: Gabriel Dos Reis
Subject: Re: [Axiom-developer] Lisp portability
Date: 22 May 2007 07:54:17 -0500

Waldek Hebisch <address@hidden> writes:

| CY wrote:
| > --- Bill Page <address@hidden> wrote:
| > 
| > > On May 21, 2007 10:55 PM Waldek Hebisch wrote:
| > > > ...
| > > > currently for clisp I need cl-fad library, which I consider
| > > > problematic.  Namely, cl-fad does not work with gcl, so for
| > > > gcl we need separate code.
| > > 
| > > In general Camm Maguire (the primary developer go GCL) has
| > > expressed strong interest in improving GCL's support for
| > > ANSI common Lisp. If solving the problems of cl-fad on GCL
| > > would further this goal, I expect that we could count on
| > > his help (time available of course not withstanding).
| > 
| > I think we need to worry first about ANSI Lisp support and second about
| > continuing to work on GCL.  GCL is targeting ANSI, so eventually it
| > should be a moot point anyway, and in the meantime I would suggest we
| > target the final platform rather than worry about working on
| > intermediate or outdated Lisp environments.
| >  
| 1) I need GCL support for regression testing.

It would be foolish to drop support for GCL, because of supposed ANSI
Lisp stuff.  In the end, Axim users don't care about ANSI Lisp stuff.
For them, Axiom is useless if it is beautifully ANSI Lisp compliant
but cannot run.  ANSI Lisp is primarily a relief for us implementers.
Lisp is no more than an assembly language for Axiom.  

| 2) I hope that Aldor lesson should be clear: avoid waiting on third
|    party, this may take long time.  In GCL case we may count on
|    goodwill of Camm, but still I do not think taht we should
|    cut off our life support and hope that it will be restored 
|    on time.

I tend to agree.  We must be careful in not loading too much the
boat.  You have continuous complain from "beniners" the entry barrier
to Axiom.  We must be careful.  Set a long term goal, and work a
smooth path way to it.  Don't foolishly believe that the world will
change overnight.

| 3) ATM core of Axiom is written in a very small subset of Lisp,
|    sitting in the intersection of Cltl and Ansi.  We need conditionals
|    for things going beyond Ansi or Ansi violations.  Directly
|    here GCL is just one more implementation.  Indirectly, we can
|    not use some Ansi features.  IMHO _that_ can wait for Ansi
|    GCL.



| <rant>  People frequently wonder why Perl is more popular than Lisp.

Oh, I thought it was Python :-) :-)

-- Gaby

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