[linux-elitists] Opera beta for linux available

Eugene Leitl eugene.leitl@lrz.uni-muenchen.de
Sun Oct 8 14:05:58 PDT 2000


Deirdre Saoirse writes:

 > Artificial languages do not have the ability to express *anything*.
 
Hogwash. Proof: you have a job.
 
 > Thus, your comparison really isn't valid.
 > 
 > In part, but in many cases it's simply the pragmatism of the approach. For
 > example, Smalltalk is not a commercial success as far as distributing
 > software goes, but it has a niche in in-house development, mostly in
 > academia and sometimes in corporations. The reason for its lack of
 > commercial succes IS almost exclusively because of the language concept.
 
Smalltalk is not a bad language, I've read some reports of a company
exclusively using it. (It may have warts, I've never used it).

 > > Sure, sometimes there's syntactic constructs that make things easier
 > > -- but, really, if you're just getting a job done, does it really
 > > matter whether you say:
 > 
 > > Really? Really really? Or is it rather just picky aesthetics? (Having
 > > a nice language where you can extend the syntax makes even syntax
 > > differences fairly moot.)
 > 
 > Rick and I had a talk about this over lunch. About the kinds of things
 > Prolog was good for as opposed to Lisp as opposed to your typical
 > imperative language.

Prolog was just a language front end to an inference engine (which you
can write in a few screenfulls of Lisp). Lisp isn't a purely
functional language as you well know, you can mix imperative and
functional stuff ad lib. The major minus of Lisp that it has never
been enforcibly standartized, had a relatively fat memory footprint
and initially lousy compilers and arithmetics, which hasn't been true
for a while.

The reason Lisp is not being used now widely is the same reason Forth
is not: vogues and subcriticality.




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