Subject: Re: LISP and C++
From: Erik Naggum <>
Date: 1999/10/29
Newsgroups: comp.lang.lisp
Message-ID: <>

* Janos Blazi
| Is it correct to say that the basic difference between C type languages
| and LISP is that in LISP we get runtime information about the type of an
| object and in C we do not.

  no.  the basic difference is that a Lisp treats code as data (and has
  stuff in it that makes this possible, such as type information), while in
  C, never the twain shall meet (because all you need to know, the compiler
  took with it when it left the scene).

| And that we have to decide if the addtional power we get is worth the
| price?

  what price?  it's C that costs extra.  ever seen how expensive it is to
  _know_ the type of an object in C code?  they invented CORBA and IDL to
  do this.  seen SGML/HTML/XML?  they tried to figure out this "how to
  represent structured stuff in text" question that Lisp solved in 1960
  with READ and PRINT that worked on lists.  it amazes me that people can't
  see beyond the façade of the soi-disant "simple" languages and solutions,
  but, hey, would advertising on television work if people actually did?

  PLEASE, start to question your own assumptions so you can discuss them,
  rather than just fling out one annoying generalization after another.