Subject: Re: CLOS is hard. Let's go shopping (Was Re: Lisp in Python) From: Erik Naggum <firstname.lastname@example.org> Date: 28 Sep 2002 18:29:16 +0000 Newsgroups: comp.lang.lisp Message-ID: <email@example.com> * Joe Marshall | I'm just so tickled that this group attracts such a high caliber of people. | How did we ever survive before? It is not this group. It is Usenet in general. Usenet in real life would be like this: Visit a public library with at least a million books. (But For best results, visit a university library.) Pick books at random. Pick pages at random. How many pages would you understand? Do you complain vociferiously about this? Do you blame the library for holding books that you do not understand? Do you see lots of people flock to the library only to express their inability to understand random pages from random books? Do they come back every day to sit down in "support groups" where one can say "I don't get this!" and get sympathy from another who says "I don't get it, either!", but then someone says "oh, that's nothing, look at what /I/ don't get!", and then they can all look at some pages from some books and laugh and ridicule the authors and the "confusing complexity" of what they cannot understand? No? Why not? Suppose we regard Usenet as an instance of democrazy¹. People should have the right to voice their opinions, the more the less they know. If someone does not understanding something, everybody can vote on it and forbid it. People who argue that it is possible to learn just about anything, because, they would argue, look at these people who have spent a decade or three on this topic -- they surely understand it, would simply be voted down by the vast majority who do not understand it. Therefore, we can have public votes on whether carbon dioxide causes floods in Central Europe, tornados in North America, and greening of Sahara, and we can assume that all the people on this planet, the total mass of which is far exceeded by /ants/, the emissions of whose technology is far exceeded by the /intestinal gases/ of all mammals, the light and heavy metallic pollution of which has been far exceeded by the heavy bombardment of interstellar matter on our planet, the carbon dioxide and temperature levels of whose most active time on earsh has been usually stable compared to the wild fluctuations of times past, which evidently did not kill off anything but instead let things evolve, include us humans. The only people who could possibly be wrong about something are the experts. Yeah, this does indeed go to the "literacy" argument. *Sigh* ------- ¹ Intentional spelling variation. -- 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.