Subject: Re: On comparing apples and oranges (was: Q: on hashes and counting)
From: Erik Naggum <>
Date: 21 Oct 2000 00:08:48 +0000
Newsgroups: comp.lang.lisp
Message-ID: <>

* Erik Naggum <>
| How does this require multiple language skills?  Must an author be
| able to write great literature in multiple languages?

* Boris Schaefer <>
| I don't think one has to know multiple languages, but I consider
| learning multiple languages rewarding because one usually learns new
| concepts together with the new languages.  I also believe that
| learning new concepts makes better programmers.
| The languages are not terribly important, but they are a good source
| of inspiration.

  Let me repeat the question: How does this require multiple language

  Yes, multiple languages have benefits.  Are those benefits tied to
  multiple languages?  I don't think they are.  I think they are tied
  to curiosity, creativity, never being fully satisfied that you have
  found the best solution, and enough humility to listen to others and
  their ideas too  It would _not_ be a good thing for a programmer to
  _have_ to learn multiple languages to be able to use new concepts,
  yet that's exactly how I see most new language come into existence:
  Some (relative) idiot can't bring himself to implement his concepts
  (which may well be brilliant and truly new) in an existing language,
  so he goes off discarding everything others spent years building so
  he can have his pet concept easily expressed.  That's nuts, really.

  There are people who have to design their own alphabets or spellings
  in order to feel able to express themselves, but I think we label
  them "insane" rather than applaud them as "language designers".

  I agree with everything you say, but I would
  attack to death your right to say it.
				-- Tom Stoppard