Subject: Re: Is LISP dying?
From: Erik Naggum <>
Date: 1999/07/18
Newsgroups: comp.lang.lisp
Message-ID: <>

* Andrew Cooke <>
| I've read all the responses so far, and I'm pretty convinced that Lisp
| isn't that poorly (thank-you!).  On the other hand, a couple of posts
| seem to reflect a certain ghetto mentality, especially this last one:

  people see what they want to see, apparantly, and that might just sum up
  this fruitless "discussion".  but anyway, I have never heard of ghettos
  being warm and welcoming towards outsiders who would like to know them --
  "ghetto" to me sort of means exactly the opposite: keeping people out and
  not letting insiders out, either.  I have never heard of ghettos who are
  willing to listen to people outside when they have a valid point, either
  -- it sort of defeats the whole purpose of a ghetto.  I have also never
  heard of people who try to explain why they don't join the masses as
  being a "ghetto".  I'd might settle for "elite" in some cases, the same
  way I certainly would agree some of my other tastes are "elite" even if
  it were flung at me like the accusation that your "ghetto mentality" is.

  obviously, you and I have very differing views about ghettos and their
  mentalities, Andrew, and I'm sure we'll never find anything at all to
  talk about, anyway, so let me just tell you that if you want to accuse
  people of an attitude that is entirely one of your own, don't act very
  surprised if you meet hostility on your way, but please be smart and
  honest enough to realize that the ghetto mentality is around yourself and
  is your own attitude to people _you_ want to keep a distance to, and that
  that is the only reason you keep seeing it.

| I don't feel I am a "better" programmer when I use one language rather
| than another ...

  I'd like to you do some soul-searching and discover for yourself where
  the need to write this statement _actually_ comes from.  then apologize
  to me for imputing it to me.  thank you.

| So, finally, my summary is: if Java attracts less skilled programmers
| that is more because it is popular (maybe because it is more suited to
| a code-shop approach) than because Lisp is necessarily "better".

  you obviously equate "less skilled" with "liar".  that is also an
  attitude entirely of your own creation, and I would again like you to
  think very carefully about why you needed to make it appear to be mine.
  in my world, you don't usually need to lie if you are actually skilled,
  but lying and being skilled are completely orthogonal qualities.  I
  challenge you to imagine these two people: person A is a very honest
  person who is currently not skilled in field F, and he sets out to learn,
  and he does obviously not tell anyone that is is skilled in field F.
  person B is actually very skilled in field F, but is so insecure that he
  is constantly lying about his skills and alsowants people to believe that
  since he is skilled in field F, he is also skilled in neighboring fields
  E and G.  now, think very carefully about these two people, Andrew, and
  read this sentence again:

    then you go do complex stuff that insecure losers who lie about their
    Java skills can't even imagine, and therefore do not consider part of
    the competition.

  is it person A of little skill or person B of much skill I am talking
  about?  if you think it is person A, I will conclude that you are a
  deeply dishonest person yourself.  if you understand that it is person B
  that I might be talking about (one of little skill may also be lying), I
  think you should publish your deeply felt remorse for having tried to
  impute a bunch of dishonest views to me.

@1999-07-22T00:37:33Z -- pi billion seconds since the turn of the century