Subject: Re: Harlequin vs. Allegro
From: Erik Naggum <>
Date: 1998/06/28
Newsgroups: comp.lang.lisp
Message-ID: <>

* Martin Rodgers
| I may buy non-MS (as I have), but what difference does that make?

  the only difference that counts.  you can't spend anybody else's money
  any differently, only your own.  if you don't want to persuade others on
  the individual level where this principle applies, you have to play with
  big marketing money and work to shift public sentiments (which you have
  demonstrated that you don't want to understand how works, so let's just
  forget that others do).  if you don't want to do what it takes, just get
  out of the game entirely -- you can only communicate your defeat and
  resignation if you are as inefficacious as you imply in every whimpering,
  whining article here, and there's no wonder you feel bad.

| Has the world changed yet?

  yes, of course it has, but you insist on measuring "the world" with a
  resolution that guarantees that you wouldn't see any differences until
  something that hits you in the head measures 7.0 on Richter's Scale.

  there's a description of depression that says that being depressed is all
  about not seeing the small and insignificant tidbits of happiness around
  you that all the significant ones are made of while you're getting more
  and more depressed waiting for the significant one that could take you
  out of your depression, but it never comes, because everything is too
  small and too insignificant to "count", and downward it goes from there.
  the same principle applies to any form of being and feeling efficacious,
  and especially to sales forces who must regard every _single_ sale as
  more significant than all the rejections before it, because they only
  make one sale at a time, and it's all they can do to keep afloat to let
  each sale vindicate their efforts.

  if you can't handle this psychological requirement of "evangelizing" or
  selling good ideas or products or yourself or whatever, don't even _try_
  to pretend that your sense of defeat or inefficacy has anything to do
  with anything but yourself.  it's you, and _only_ you, that is the
  problem if you can't make such a sale --- just wise up to the fact that
  you're just not cut out for it and leave the scene to those who _can_
  handle it.  being a good salesman is all about first selling yourself the
  idea that you _can_ actually handle this, and then letting every sale
  reinforce that belief.  but lose that crucial faith, and you're history,
  no matter how many sales you make or don't make.  it's _all_ psychology.

  the world changes with every significant action you make.  if you feel
  the world doesn't change when you act, either your actions are truly
  insignificant, or you're just depressed.  now you can go hang yourself or
  you can go do something significant.  my suggestion if you want to keep
  whining and bemoaning the state of the world is to put yourself out of
  your misery as soon as possible (please let me try to sell you the rope),
  but you _could_ also try getting out of your depression and one good way
  is to start noticing what software people are actually buying.  (do you
  recognize that question?)  every single computer in the world that sports
  a Common Lisp environment is important to its programmer and its vendor
  (or author); why isn't it to you?  every single sale of a Linux CD-ROM is
  important to the customer and the Free Software world; why isn't it to
  you?  every single transfer of the Association of Lisp Users web page to
  somebody browser is important to the Lisp community; why isn't it to you?

-- is about my spam protection scheme and how
  to guarantee that you reach me.  in brief: if you reply to a news article
  of mine, be sure to include an In-Reply-To or References header with the
  message-ID of that message in it.  otherwise, you need to read that page.