15 Sep 2004 chalst   » (Master)

Common LISP vs. scheme anecdote
Phil Greenspun has an anecdote of a large data set computation he coded in MIT Scheme, could not coax into functioning, and received advice from Gerry Sussman that this sort of task could only be coded in C(?), before he successfully recoded it in Common LISP. No date for the events, he wrote it up in 1998, and I'd guess it's from 1990ish [via lemonodor]. And for the record, I should say I hope that these kinds of problems with scheme are being sorted out with the SRFI process...

Whiler I'm on CLisp & scheme, there's a 2001 article by Kent Pitman, which outlines a genealogical argument for CLisp and scheme to have become different enough that not both can be called LISP. It's a nice piece, but I don't agree with the conclusion: in terms of language construction, there is more that unites these languages -- to use the metaphor of taxonomy, if they do not belong to the same genus, they still belong to the same family. And, indeed, one can expect that changes in programming language tool support will change the perceived distance between the languages.

Cole on Al-Qaeda
Juan Cole has a summary, September 11 and Its Aftermath , of Al-Qaeda's objectives in its terrorist campaign.

raph's personal news: Nasty situation -- you have my sympathies, and I hope the two of you can find a good arrangement with your children.
mslicker on Advogato Wiki: Interesting idea. I'm tempted to say that it couldn't make things worse. Project pages are near enough wikis as it stands, without the convenient syntax. On the other hand, I think that wikipedia has the tremendous advantage that the project is very good at forging common purpose. In principle we have that here at advogato, in practice there is no real shared activity here, so the divisions are most prominent. I have some very speculative ideas of how to start remedying this, which I hope to post on soon.

Edit (2008-10-20): Fixed another hyperlink.

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