Message from discussion LISP - R5RS - John McCarthy
From: David Rush <k...@bellsouth.net>
Subject: Re: LISP - R5RS - John McCarthy
Date: 27 Sep 2002 07:31:52 +0100
Organization: Netscape Communications Corp.
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ilias <at_n...@pontos.net> writes:
> Thomas Bushnell, BSG wrote:
> > ilias <at_n...@pontos.net> writes:
> >>- medium violation (must stay in usenet, internet thus my results can
> >>be used be anyone who has a connection)
This is illogical and a medium violation. In this medium,
(comp.lang.scheme) there is constant reference to outside books and
papers. You're going to have to get used to it, it's part of our
culture. If you don't like that, you'll need to go elsewhere.
> do you know an answer to my question?
> Why's John McCarthy not mentioned (as the inventor/designer of LISP)
> in the R5RS document?
1) This is a widely known fact in Lisp culture.
2) It is not especially relevant in a *language specification*.
3) There are lots of other places (even on the net) where that fact is
You may not like reason #2, but, in writing a document, you have to
decide what must be excluded as much as what is included. Scheme owes
something to McCarthy (mostly S-expresion syntax, which actually was
not his primary intention), but it owes *much* (orders of magnitude)
more to Sussman and Steele who realized that full TCO enabled CPS
which meant that you could drop every control structure out of the
language except function application. You'll want to read the Lambda
papers (which all have titles like _Lambda: Ultimate..._) the on
readscheme.org for the full story.
Anyway, if you want to change it you'll need to develop a fair bit of
credibility in the community. Saying "I can't/won't read anything
outside of Usenet/the World-Wide-Web" will not accomplish that.
As I've gained more experience with Perl it strikes me that it resembles
Lisp in many ways, albeit Lisp as channeled by an awk script on acid.
-- Tim Moore (on comp.lang.lisp)