Subject: Re: Java vs lisp (was: Re: Prolog vs. Lisp)
From: Erik Naggum <>
Date: 1997/04/04
Message-ID: <>

* Erik Naggum
| can you draw a line between Java the language and Java the implementation
| the same way the Common Lisp guys had to draw that line?

* Fergus Henderson
| Yes, you can.  Java the language is defined by the Java Language
| Specification.

the important issue in this regard is that Common Lisp was an effort to
standardize what _could_ be standardized among vendors of other Lisps
(before CLtL) and Common Lisp (after CLtL).  lack of agreement on a
multi-processing system excluded it from the standard, although every
vendor has their version of it.  the same goes for many other things.

Java had the luxury of being specified and implemented by the same vendor.
the difference between "language" and "implementation" is thus a question
of how much you can agree with yourself to make part of the language.

I'm no longer young enough to know everything.