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Date: Tue, 17 Dec 85 10:50:24 pst
From: edsel!jonl at su-navajo.arpa (Jon L White)
Perhaps you, and/or the other people who have volunteered opinions on this
topic, can comment on whether a GLOBAL declaration, in parallel to the SPECIAL
declaration, would be satisfactory; or whether there is a need for a more
scheme-like mechanism also.
I liked your message. I think that a (PROCLAIM '(GLOBAL FOO))
proclamation would do the trick. A DEFGLOBAL macro analogous to DEFVAR
would be convenient, and symmetrical with DEFVAR and the other DEF's.
Much as I like the feature, I think that adding the full generality of
the MIT/Yale Schemes' fluid-let would confuse too many people and anger
too many implementors. I only mentioned it for its educational value.
As far as forbidding LAMBDA-binding of globals, this hadn't occurred to
me, but it's probably the right thing, for similar reasons. Again, I'm
a fan of block structured languages, but Common Lisp simply is NOT block
structured, and this feature would be too confusing. Forbidding
lambda-binding globals sort of defeats the idea of lexical scoping, but
then so does (PROCLAIM '(SPECIAL ...)). Also, it's a conservative
approach, since it doesn't preclude possible later relaxation of the
If Common Lisp hadn't re-cycled LAMBDA for the two different purposes of
lexical and dynamic binding, we wouldn't be having these problems now.
But c'est la vie. I can't really complain, since I didn't make a stink
about it when the decisions were being made. Maybe we'll get it right
next time around.