Subject: Re: Simple binary I/O question
From: Erik Naggum <>
Date: 1999/03/24
Newsgroups: comp.lang.lisp
Message-ID: <>

* Ewan Dennis <>
| I'm trying to barf binary floating point values out of a LISP environment
| and into a file.

  that is actually not a meaningful request.

| The file streaming stuff seems to be geared towards bytes and text.  This
| would be fine if it let you just throw the bits of an IEEE (hah) standard
| single-float onto a stream.

  why do you need this?  do you need to talk to a different program?  do
  you think (or know) that reading and writing floating-point numbers is
  a real bottle-neck in your application?

| I'm obviously missing something simple.  Could someone please put me out
| of my misery?

  could be you simply need FASL-WRITE and FASL-READ in Allegro CL 4.3.2.
  these functions preserve the notion of type that exists in memory, and
  which does _not_ exist in a file to which you have just dumped a bunch of
  bytes, just like raw bytes in memory doesn't have crucial type knowledge
  in C, but it has in Common Lisp.

  as I told someone else: chuck the C mind-set and re-evaluate the problem.