Subject: Re: LISP and AI
From: Erik Naggum <>
Date: 2000/05/10
Newsgroups: comp.lang.lisp
Message-ID: <>

* Erann Gat
| From this admonition I infered that you thought that I was asking
| this question of programmers and not librarians (else why the
| admonition?).  But this is not the case.  There are librarians here.

  It may come as a shock to you, but this is not a newsgroup for
  librarians even if there be librarians here.  You would get answers
  from the _intersection_ between those interested in Lisp and those
  with a librarian past (or present) at _best_.

  So I repeat: If you want to understand bibliographic references,
  talk to (a forum for) _librarians_, not (a forum for) programmers.

  I regret it every time I express myself in such a way that you can
  pull an Erann Gat out of the proverbial hat and quibble over some
  pretty clear phrasing just to pick fights, but it is unfortunately
  impossible for either man or machine to predict how you will read
  normal English prose to find "flaws".  I have long ago concluded
  that there is nothing in what I say or do that triggers your insane
  quibbling, and consequently nothing I can change to make you less

  The reason I'm pointing you to librarians is that it is obvious to
  me that you don't want to understand bibliographic references, you
  only want me to be wrong.  "There is no third document involved" is
  not a signal from a person who wants to understand anything, it's
  the metallic sound of a mind closing like a steel trap.

| For all I knew *you* could have been a librarian.

  For all I know, you _could_ be smart enough to realize why you are
  counter-prouctive.  The evidence is wanting, however.

| Actually, that's an interesting point.  Erik, are you a librarian?
| If you are, why didn't you just answer my question?  And if you
| aren't, why should anyone listen to what you have to say on the
| subject of bibliographic references?

  Excuse me?  _You're_ the idiot who wants to make librarians and
  programmers into mutually exclusive groups.  I merely suggested you
  ask "librarians" and not "programmers", but your limited mental
  abilities didn't quite grasp that the mere existence of a librarian
  in a group of programmers doesn't constitute asking librarians if
  you ask these programmers.  How can I help you understand this?  I
  _have_ tried by inserting the rather obvious "(a forum for)" in the
  rephrasing above.  I hope, but do not believe, this will help.

| I am not trying to pick a fight.  I am trying to ask a question ...

  Yeah, I'm sure.  Consider your previous paragraph.  "Why should
  anyone listen to you" is _just_ a question.  Sure.  Not picking a
  fight at all.  Geez, do you even believe your own silliness?

| My question: why is it obviously false?

  If you could open your mind enough to let the thought in that a
  bibliographic reference may be located in a different document than
  the document that made the reference (commentaries on the works of
  philosophers often supply "latent" references, to take another
  example), you see that it is completely unreasonable to deny that a
  third document may be involved in the general case, hence obviously
  false that "there is no third document involved".  Bibliographic
  references have historically never been _restricted_ to simple
  one-way pointers, either (although that is the most common version)
  -- insisting that they are is just plain stupid.