Subject: Re: Beginner question: performance problems with a simple program
From: Erik Naggum <>
Date: Tue, 01 Jan 2002 22:08:24 GMT
Newsgroups: comp.lang.lisp
Message-ID: <>

* Aleksandr Skobelev <>
| "Most of the work is done" might be more correctly to speak.  IMHO ANSI
| CL standard is lacking in support for locales/charsets.

  ANSI CL is also lacking in support for printing the new Euro notes on
  ordinary office laser printers, another would-be useful thing that is
  outside the scope of the standard.

  If you have actually tried using locales to achieve localizability and
  still think they serve a useful purpose beyond marketing rhetoric, I
  would like to see your code.

| So any non-Latin-1 user [...]

  ANSI Common Lisp is not even defined for ISO Latin 1, but for a character
  set that closely matches ASCII or ISO 646 IRV.  However, that is only a
  minimum requirement -- the implementation is obliged to document what it
  actually supports.  Several Common Lisp implementations support a 16-bit
  Unicode.  Note that there is no standard way to add case information to
  the supported character set, so if you want to depend on the language
  support for case conversion, you are SOOL if what you want it is not
  supported, especially if the char-up/downcase functions are inlined as
  tests for a-z so you cannot even redefine them.  (E.g., this is still a
  problem in Allegro CL's 8-bit-character version despite excellent support
  for character sets in the 16-bit-character version.)

| And when I think about some funny features in the language like
| YES-OR-NO-P or ~R in FORMAT, I understand that they were designed with
| English taken in consideration only.

  This is a good thing.  If it were designed by the usual "international"
  tactics, it would lack a lot of useful features because some rinkydink
  language with a few hundred speakers could not support it, like plurals.

  The fact that you react to these things with some hosility is a good sign
  that Common Lisp would have suffered had it been intended to placate all
  the sourpusses in the world who envy the United States is position and
  who loathe the role that English has acquired -- instead of French or
  German, both or either which "deserve" it much more than English does, if
  you poll several large segments of the European population.

  Fortunately, I can say all these things because I am _not_ American, but
  happen to come from and live in a rinkydink country with three official
  languages for less than 5 million people, one of which is a pathetic
  rural rebellion against national standards set by the cities and which
  today differ much less than British and American English.  Just how hard
  do you have to lose to think such a stunt is a good idea for the _same_
  people?  Right!  So pardon me while I think "locales" and supporting
  loser dialects is a Bad Idea.