Subject: Re: a cycnical hypothesis/inference
From: Erik Naggum <>
Date: 06 Sep 2002 21:53:46 +0000
Newsgroups: comp.lang.scheme,comp.lang.lisp
Message-ID: <>

* (Shinji Ikari)
| - despite all the passionate argument to the contrary, and contrived
| examples aside, they simply don't match the performance of C/C++ for
| real world applications [...]

  I have seen three cases up close and personal where the system was built
  using Common Lisp and then some idiot manager decided to reimplement it in
  C++ (and two cases in Java) precisely to get better performance for the
  application (but not for the programmers), better replaceability of the
  programmers, and more managability of the whole project, only to discover
  that it takes about five times as long to reimplement something in C++ as it
  took to design and implement the first system in Common Lisp, it does not
  perform noticeably better along any relevant axes, the complexity in C++
  makes the programmers just as irreplaceable, and there is no managerial gain
  to use C++ over Common Lisp, but at this point, they have decided on C++ and
  work very hard to make it look like a good choice because they would look
  like utter morons if they could not even pretend that it was a bad choice.
  The end result is, however, that a project becomes irreplaceable when it has
  been coded in C++ because it cannot easily be modified and nobody dares
  start another project to reimplement it until it is much too late and all
  the old folks who remember the modifiable, adjustable, reprogrammable Lisp
  system have all quit or been fired.  The someone can come in an suggest that
  it be reimplemented in Common Lisp, again, and save people a lot of money in
  the process, until the next manager comes along and claims that the cost of
  the Common Lisp system is too high, they cannot find other Common Lisp
  programmers, and even though their current resident genius seems happy, they
  never know when he'll be stolen by another company or quit, or, God forbid,
  be run over by a bus, so they have to reimplement it, in Java this time, or
  perhaps C#.

| - there are not enough Erik Naggums to go around

  Yeah, I should get started with the cloning, already.

Erik Naggum, Oslo, Norway

Act from reason, and failure makes you rethink and study harder.
Act from faith, and failure makes you blame someone and push harder.