Subject: Re: CMU CL vs. CLISP?
From: Erik Naggum <>
Date: 1999/07/29
Newsgroups: comp.lang.lisp
Message-ID: <>

* Mark Carroll <>
| I would have thought that continuing accurate maintenace of an organised
| known bugs list would be pretty much a prerequisite for anyone managing
| 'current' software, especially if it's not just used in-house.

  maintaining a database for internal use is quite different from making it
  useful to the outside world.

| The hope would be that the work involved for Franz in publishing such a
| list for ACL 5.x would be mostly in concatenating and presenting it,
| rather than generating it in the first place!

  it seems that you assume they don't have a clue.  I find such assumptions
  to be indicative of the attitudes of the sender rather than whoever he is
  trying to put it over on.

  I know from maintaining other projects that organizing a list of bugs for
  internal use requires only a modicum of orderliness.  making it possible
  for outsiders to make use of this list is sometimes very, very hard.

  e.g., I recently had a problem with nested WITH-TIMEOUT forms, because
  the macro didn't generate a new tag to throw to when the timeout fired,
  so it always triggered the inner timeout-code.  this had a lot of really
  weird ramifications that obscured the actual problem, but until we found
  the bug, it was very hard even to write down coherently what was going
  on.  after the problem was found, a fix was made available to me within a
  couple minutes.  so the known bug lived for a few seconds, while the
  problem had persisted for weeks.  what should be entered in the known
  bugs list?  is it more useful to provide a patch to the problem than to
  let people work around the bug?  in my view "known bugs" lists are good
  for developers to avoid pitfalls, but when the usual case is that you fix
  the bug as soon as you find what it actually is, what's the point?  just
  get people to download patches.  (Allegro CL 5.0.1 comes with a function
  that automatically retrieves updates.)

  suppose we blasted all politicians into space.
  would the SETI project find even one of them?