Subject: Re: Your introduction to Lisp...
From: Erik Naggum <>
Date: Thu, 25 Apr 2002 00:40:58 GMT
Newsgroups: comp.lang.lisp
Message-ID: <>

* Andy <>
| And btw. Peter said phyton was 100 (!) times slower.

  Perhaps Lisp has a future as an interpreted language?  Maybe this whole
  compiler thing was the reason it never took off?  Lisp was slow and large
  and interpreted _way_ ahead of the crowd, but then got fast and lean and
  mean before the others had time to catch up or even be invented.  Such is
  _not_ good for business.  The key problem is that computers are simply
  becoming too fast for human comfort.  Computers have already answered
  most questions before the human has actually finished asking it, like
  this: before the tactile response from the mouse or the enter key has
  reached the brain, the eye detects a change, making it appear that the
  computer knew what you were going to ask before you did.  Clearly, if
  you are generally slow to begin with, this can be stunningly scary.  Our
  good friends at Microsoft are working day and night to make sure that no
  computer is ever faster than any person alive on earth today, and many
  other developers for too fast computers help by reinventing byte code and
  other slow and bloated interpreters.  It also helped a lot with slow and
  congested Internet links, but now that that is soon history, responsible
  and idiot-friendly companies compensate for any uncomfortable speed with
  web pages with tons of Javascript, stylesheets, many nested tables, and a
  thousand images that say less than one well-chosen word, not to mention
  the excellent effort by such things as Gecko to make display comfortably
  and predictably slow.  Users can make a very simple test.  How fast do
  you want your autorepeat to work?  Set the number of repetitions per
  second to what you believe is your IQ.    IIff  yyoouu  wwrriittee
  lliikkee  tthhiiss   ooorrr   llliiikkkeee   ttthhhiiisss, you are not as
  smart as you think you are, and should get a slower computer, too, or
  maybe use Python.  Artificial Intelligence is good, but we cannot have
  computers that are way faster than their programmers' real intelligence,
  can we?  Moreover, if the computer is busy doing some mindless repetitive
  task like running a byte code interpreter, it will never figure out what
  it is _really_ doing, either.  The world is yet safe for average people.

  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.

  Post with compassion: