Subject: Re: Free vs Commercial Lisp
From: Erik Naggum <>
Date: 1998/12/23
Newsgroups: comp.lang.lisp
Message-ID: <>

* (David Steuber "The Interloper")
| As long as the free lisp implementations hold to the ANSI Common Lisp
| standard, why would commercial lisp systems have any great advantage?

  for the same reason literature has an advantage over dictionaries.

  reading through your terribly confused message, I must conclude that
  you're like a man born blind who's insisting that sight is greatly
  over-rated, never having experienced it yet obviously able to survive
  without it.

| The only lisp systems that would remain in real use would be the ones
| that conformed to the ANSI CL spec closely enough to take advantage of
| the packages in the archive.

  that's _obviously_ not what's going to happen.  here's why: if some
  package doesn't work with _your_ favorite Common Lisp implementation,
  will you fix your Common Lisp implementation (a generally enormous task)
  or will you fix the package and feel much better that you could spend
  half an hour changing a perfectly working program so it would work with
  your non-conforming implementation?  repeat for one million users of
  crappy, yet free, implementations of Common Lisp.  result: it isn't
  likely to work with _anything_.

  Perl has the advantage that it has exactly one implementation.  that's
  what you test it against.  Common Lisp has a specification.  people will
  test against their implementations to decide what to do.  you do not know
  how to read the standard yourself, so how you can even begin to assume
  that others will consult the standard first, and stop doing what they
  wanted to do and instead go off and fix the Common Lisp system is quite
  literally beyond me.

| The major area of competition would become the development environment.

  you know not at all of what you speak.

  Nie wieder KrF!  Nie wieder KrF!  Nie wieder KrF!  Nie wieder KrF!