Subject: Re: A lisp challenge. From: Erik Naggum <firstname.lastname@example.org> Date: Thu, 21 Mar 2002 10:00:37 GMT Newsgroups: comp.lang.lisp Message-ID: <email@example.com> * Damond Walker | In my short career (12 years) I've seen many problems/applications | which were "not well specified." | | Are you talking about problems which are *hard* to specify or are we | talking about systems with just a *poor* definition? In my experience, the most interesting problems are very different before and after they have a solution. If you implement the problem as it was understood before it had a real solution, you have one more problem. If you try to understand the problem as you keep trying to solve it, you may end up with a lot fewer problems than you solved. I find it extremely hard to do this in languages that require (1) an enormous amount of typing to get anything useful done, and (2) an enormous amount of thinking to get anything useful typed. Now, since problems to which we already have one correct solution are hardly _problems_ any longer, I consider only the problems that have no solution to be worth solving, and quite frequently, the solution to such a problem is to discover that it really is a different problem. This is what understand "not well specified" to mean in a Common Lisp context. In a C++ context, such a problem would just be dumb to give to a coder. /// -- In a fight against something, the fight has value, victory has none. In a fight for something, the fight is a loss, victory merely relief.