Subject: Re: free lisp compilers?
From: Erik Naggum <>
Date: 1999/09/06
Newsgroups: comp.lang.lisp
Message-ID: <>

* Friedrich Dominicus
| The anser was in respond to the opinion that one is x-times more
| productive with Lisp than with C++.  I don't believe that.  You have a
| millions tools for C++, because of the weaknesses of the language, but if
| you use them well you can't say any longer that you are more productive
| with Lisp + Tools.

  what _would_ make you "believe"?  if I have gauged you right, you never
  will, no matter what anyone tries to do to answer your questions.  what I
  don't understand is why you have this vested interest in C++.  or is it a
  vested interest in knocking Lisp?

| The fact that you are more productive with Common Lisp is just stated as
| an opinion here and of course that is no suprise, we're in
| comp.lang.lisp.

  this indicates that you think people choose languages blindly, and then
  defend them blindly, which is indeed highly indicative of your opinions
  and your treatment of those who disagree with you and try to answer your
  questions.  it may be true of C++, and it seems it is, but it is not true
  or Lisp.  people choose Lisp because they have begun to think about some
  big issues in programming computers, and because they want to be more
  efficient and productive as programmers and systems builders.  people
  just don't pretend to know Common Lisp because they can get high-paying
  jobs that way.  you can actually trust someone who says he knows Common
  Lisp.  imagine trusting someone in the computer business, Friedrich.

| So personally for me I think it would be easier to learn C++ than Common
| Lisp.

  that could well be.  some people have a very hard time with the simple
  and straight-forward.  I have seen C++ programmers purposefully write
  extremely ugly code in Common Lisp because they wanted "performance", but
  they had no actual idea whether their ugly code was better in that regard
  -- it was important that it looked "dense" and used a lot of "primitives"
  and they cared about milliseconds, but forgot the seconds: a clean
  rewrite of their code (with a few declarations) gained a factor 10 on
  their code, which they had been micro-optimizing for a week.

| If you are a good or even excellent programmer using imperative languages
| you will decrease productivity enormous while switching to declarative
| programming.  The question is how long does that take and will you then
| outrock your old programming style.

  people who fear new things will generally behave this way.  those who
  enjoy them very much won't even understand why you would measure any sort
  of _productivity_ during a learning phase.  most people learn Common Lisp
  on the side and get paid doing other work until they feel competent to go
  public with it.  then they might surreptiously start using it to gain an
  advantage on their peers, such as prototyping, automatic code generation,
  code maintenance tools, etc.  people do this in Emacs Lisp, too, if they
  use Emacs.  some people, however, insist on writing all the code manually
  and will never trust machine-generated code (except perhaps compilers).
  distrust of other people generally comes with distrust of their tools.

  save the children: just say NO to sex with pro-lifers