Subject: Re: Lisp is neither (was Re: Ousterhout and Tcl lost the plot)
From: Erik Naggum <>
Date: 1997/04/23
Newsgroups: comp.lang.scheme,comp.lang.lisp,comp.lang.tcl,comp.lang.functional,comp.lang.c++,comp.lang.perl.misc,comp.lang.python,comp.lang.eiffel
Message-ID: <>

* M. Prasad
| We seem to have lots of opinions, with a fair amount of blame placement
| on management.  But you don't get to manage a start-up with that many
| high-powered brains, unless you are really good and proven.  So I still
| doubt the "bad management" theory very much.

I think it would be instructive for you to study the demise of Lucid, Inc.
and the way its founder, Richard P. Gabriel, was treated by the investors
(the _actual_ managers) of the company.

if a company fails, it's because of bad management.  if it succeeds, it's
because of good employees.  that is, companies with good employees and bad
management fail.  companies with bad employees and good management fail.
the latter combination does not occur in practice.

however, more often than not, the whoever holds the purse is the actual
management of a company.  and more often than not, people who make lots of
money are good at screwing people who trusted them, not at making good
technical decisions.  (no, Bill Gates is not an exception to this rule.)
and if you make good technical decisions, you need a small, privately held
company to make it to manager.

a quick look at the Lisp industry will show you what kind of people lead
them, what kind of companies are really in this market, and also the
commonality of the failures.  this is another reason I want to work with
Lisp.  I don't want to deal with software companies that let people like
John Ousterhout do their marketing.  (does that wrap this up?  nah.)

if we work really hard, will obsolescence be farther ahead or closer?