[Openmcl-devel] ccl manual (was Re: trace on recursive functions)
psismondi at arqux.com
Mon Dec 14 13:13:15 PST 2009
On 2009-12-14, at 1:48 PM, Ron Garret wrote:
> On Dec 14, 2009, at 10:31 AM, Brian Mastenbrook wrote:
>> On 12/14/2009 12:06 PM, Ron Garret wrote:
>>> On Dec 14, 2009, at 9:13 AM, Brian Mastenbrook wrote:
>>>> On 12/13/2009 7:33 PM, Ron Garret wrote:
>>>>> On Dec 13, 2009, at 12:30 PM, Brian Mastenbrook wrote:
>>>>>> I personally find editing text in S-Expressions to be incredibly
>>>>>> cumbersome. Quite a lot of my code is mixed XML/S-Expressions
>>>>>> done with
>>>>>> a reader macro that allows me to write things like (<a
>>>>>> "Text!"), and while this works for layout in web applications
>>>>>> I'd go mad
>>>>>> trying to read things like "This is a bit of text that has
>>>>>> and \"\\"\" (backslashes) in it".
>>>>> Then I have good news for you too. There is another cool new
>>>>> technology called Unicode, which gives you access to additional
>>>>> characters beyond those in the traditional ASCII repertoire. In
>>>>> particular, Unicode gives you access to a number of different
>>>>> styles of balanced quotation marks. Balanced quotation marks
>>>>> can be nested, and also allow one level of traditional
>>>>> unbalanced quotes to be contained, all without any escape
>>>>> characters. e.g.
>>>>> «Balanced quotes can be «nested» and can contain "unbalanced
>>>>> quotation marks" without any escape characters.»
>>>> Clearly for a documentation-oriented wiki, there will be a need
>>>> to use the standard quotation marks that Common Lisp uses. Your
>>>> funny Unicode quotations are just constituent characters to the
>>>> default reader.
>>> Guess what! More good news! (One of these days you are going to
>>> notice a pattern developing here.) You can actually *change* the
>>> Lisp reader! Yourself! Easily!
>> Yes, and if you change it enough you'll basically wind up with a
>> reader that's customized to writing documentation. Which is exactly
>> what the @-reader in PLT's Scribble is, which is why I pointed it
>> The point is that you've now gone from very simple sexps to a
>> custom syntax that also happens to require me to change system
>> settings in order to be able to edit it efficiently (since I assume
>> the custom quotes will be used for all text in this documentation
>> format; you can't very well document how to use CL strings using a
>> non-standard reader).
>> You would do well to assume that I'm not an ignoramus. I am well
>> versed in this wonderful Unicode and Common Lisp stuff. I am
>> pointing out these problems because your solutions are just as
>> complicated as the solution of using a format where text is
>> unquoted and meta-information is escaped, with the added bonus of
>> not shifting the burden of figuring out how to insert quotes onto
>> the user and their level of familiarity with how to edit plists or
>> whatever's required to make this convenient on other platforms.
> No, my solution is not "just as complicated." My solution has one
> very small startup cost which then pays dividends over a very long
> period of time. Furthermore, my solution would serve as a showcase
> for what makes Lisp different and unique. And finally, we're
> talking about writing documentation here. If we can't document the
> process of editing keybindings well enough to serve the target
> audience we're talking about here then we may as well just pack our
> bags and go home.
> If we're not going to take advantage of Lisp's unique features to
> solve our own problems how are we ever going to convince anyone else
> that Lisp can solve their problems? What are we even doing here?
> Openmcl-devel mailing list
> Openmcl-devel at clozure.com
Ron - does the usefulness of Lisp really imply that one should re-do
markup languages using it? Perhaps SGML and XML are ugly and sub-
optimal. So, I guess, is HTML. But there is a wealth of new problems
to solve (with Lisp!) without rolling our own that area.
I'm a recent convert to Lisp. I think it will solve lots of my
problems, once I am reasonably adept with it. But not ALL of my
problems. I am willing to bite the bullet and go with the crowd on
some things, like markup.
It's near xmas - maybe Erik Naggum (rest in peace, Erik) will appear
to chastise me for my idiocy. But I'm ok with a certain amount of
cruft, if it sorta works and I can move on to other things.
- Philippe -
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