Subject: Re: Static/Strong/Implicit Typing From: Erik Naggum <email@example.com> Date: 26 Jan 2004 08:30:03 +0000 Newsgroups: comp.lang.lisp Message-ID: <3284094603347362KL2065E@naggum.no> * sajiimori | I'm sure that's just the tip of the iceberg, but I haven't been using Lisp | long enough to discover many significant benefits of dynamic typing. We already knew that by now. You are probably the millionth person to come to Common Lisp thinking that the only solution to your problems in making programs work correctly is static type analysis, because that was the solution to the same problem in the previous language you tried to learn by trial-and-error. Trust me, the solution is not to add static type analysis to the language, it is to upgrade your brain to work with a new language and a new set of solutions to a new set of problems. Static type analysis leads to brain damage and it has to be repaired before you can deal with a world where others are not obliged to do only what you have advertised that you accept. There is a golden rule about learning anything new. First, you look long and hard at it and determine that it is not something you already know. Then, you look at all the differences you can find and work hard to disregard any emotional responses of the sort «I already know this!» because you think you see a similarity. Finally, you approach it as something you have to learn, because you realize that you do not already know it. If you do not follow this golden rule, you will only succeed in treating all things that are somewhat similar as the same, and you will respond with things like «You folks sure are touchy» when you think you see something that is similar to something you already determined was the result of being «touchy». When you are mistaken in making such pronouncements, you get snubbed by people you have angered and you probably become even more certain that they are touchy, but you have in fact insulted them with your prejudice and they try to make you back off and take another look at the evidence. If you are not the kind of person who is able to disregard similarities and look for the surprising dissimilarity with curiosity, this will not work, and you will only deepen your conviction that you already understand what you see. I know what I think about you right now, but you have the option of responding with more curiosity and less judgment at any time. Some psychologists argue that this is a personality property and that some people naturally judge before they know what they look at, while others are naturally curious and defer judgment even when they know what they look at. Both need to do something unnatural at times and break the natural habit, but if you are the judging type and something uncomfortable shows up, your tendency to judge before you think will most probably overwhelm any residiual curiosity. You make a distinct impression of being very strongly judging, so this is a very strong strong request for you to back off from your judgments and take a closer look at the evidence. -- Erik Naggum | Oslo, Norway 2004-026 Act from reason, and failure makes you rethink and study harder. Act from faith, and failure makes you blame someone and push harder.