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- To: common-lisp@SU-AI
- Subject: Common Lisp
- From: Dick Gabriel <RPG@SU-AI>
- Date: Wed, 22 Jun 1983 03:20:00 -0000
There is a price and a benefit in seeking to make a new standard language.
Being a new standard it can afford to regularize those features of the
language that have been recognized as useful. A language like Lisp can
grow by adding features pell-mell. The benefit is that when we re-make it
we can improve it, though we may alter unimportant parts of the language
that are part of its tradition. The price is to give up some habits and
familiar paths of programming.
When some group decides to implement ``Common Lisp'' except for those some
features they like from an older Lisp, then that community has adopted a
Common-Lisp-like Lisp. The Lisp they run is not Common Lisp; none of the
guarantees of compatibility are extended to them: they must bear the
brunt of modifying their code to run on other Common Lisps; and they must
re-write other people's code to run on their Lisp.
This is their choice.
The idea behind a standard is that it is a standard.