Subject: Re: corba or sockets?
From: Erik Naggum <>
Date: 30 Oct 2000 20:31:36 +0000
Newsgroups: comp.lang.lisp
Message-ID: <>

* "Marc Battyani" <>
| This is why I ask you if you still think so if the protocol is a
| simple lisp reader friendly text based protocol when 1) the task is
| really easy and 2) you master both sides of the communication?

  The likelihood that novices will do worse than CORBA is still very,
  very high.  Look at how people design their input languages from
  simple files that are under total programmer control, and often they
  blow it so bad applications crash and burn, a missed version update
  causes serious bit rot, and changing your mind about something means
  you lose a _lot_ of old information.  Using Lisp for this does not
  really help.

  No networked task is really easy.  If it were, you wouldn't be doing
  it.  If you're still doing it, how could that possibly impact any
  decision on how to design protocols for tasks _worth_ doing?

  I actually _favor_ Lisp-based protocols, but not because "it's text,
  so it's easy" is even close to relevant (it isn't -- syntax is an
  important issue to humans -- it is _not_ important to representing
  the data), but because it means I have a stable and proven framework
  to work from.

  It is actually quite important to realize that just because it's
  text doesn't make it any less fraught with all the dangers of other
  network protocols.  For one thing, network communications is subject
  to a failure modes that novices never consider.  Even with the best
  of checksum algorithms, you _may_ get rotten data once in a while.
  Deadlocks may occur whether you use a hariy binary protocol or a
  Lisp-based protocol.  All these things are unlikely to happen if you
  run on a local machine, and they don't happen if you work within the
  same memory.   (Unless you run without error correcting memory, of
  course, but then again, if you do that, you have already proclaimed
  to the world that you don't care, so nobody else should bother.)

  Does anyone remember where I parked Air Force One?
                                   -- George W. Bush