Subject: Re: Difference between LISP and C++ From: Erik Naggum <email@example.com> Date: 10 Oct 2002 23:48:28 +0000 Newsgroups: comp.lang.lisp Message-ID: <firstname.lastname@example.org> * arien <email@example.com> | What I still find hard to grasp, is normally when you distribute a | program, you distribute the executables. But executables do not live in a void. You cannot get an executable that runs under Windows and Linux despite running on the same hardware once booted with the appropriate system, or on the Wintendo platform and on the Solaris platform despite being written in languages available on both. There is a persistent myth about "standalone" executables that is fairly strongly counter-indicated by incompatible operating systems, and in the C++ world, you even need the exact same compiler to make things work with distributed shared libraries. (One version of the semipopular DeadRat Linux distribution actually used a very particular version of gcc that did funny things so that you could not compile C++ programs on other Linux systems and have them run on DeadRat systems.) So you cannot just distribute executables. It is a myth. Better shed it now or hurt later. | So how would you distribute a program created in Lisp? You distribute something that will run in the environment your users have already installed, possibly mere minutes prior to installing your program in whatever form they may take. This is really a non-issue. If you ask whether a Common Lisp program can run on the bare metal, the answer is No. If you ask whether it can run with only "standard" libraries, you have to compare that with other languages, and you will find that Common Lisp is no different from any other language in this regard: No. To be able to run with only operating-system-supplied shared libraries, your program really has to be part of that operating system. Some Unix and Windows programs have that function. It is not common to write "hello, world" programs in Common Lisp like it is in C/C++ and Common Lisp environments are therefore not optimized very heavily for this task. | Also, as I asked in another post above, can lisp create a UI? Well, we have not quite developed our artificial intelligence systems that far, yet. You still need a programmer to create a user interface. If the Common Lisp programmer is well versed in user interfaces, then he would use Common Lisp to create the user interface, too. Please note that several of the Common Lisp environments include interface builders that alleviate some of the tedium of writing user interfaces. Those who like that kind of thing will find them the kind of thing they like. | Or would you use something like C++ for the UI, and then that runs the | lisp code? Java has positioned itself as very useful tool in this regard. People have also found HTML and web pages to be a convenient vehicle. | Lastly, I show some sample lisp code, that I had written, to a friend and | he responded that it looked like a Low Level Lanuage. Could someone tell | me 1) if this is true, and 2) The difference between High Level and Low | Level languages? I think you should ask yourself why you trust your friend's opinion and ask him what he means by it. You could, for instance, have written very low-level code and your friend may have been polite about who is to blame for that. Some people here think that being polite is all the rage, but I am not generally of that opinion as it tends to make people believe they have not made serious mistakes even when the intended message is that they have. -- 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.