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Re: How constant are defconstants?

Sorry, I wasn't fully clear.  "compile-time constants", when mentioned
to the CommonLisp community, merely mean "constants", especially when
encountered by the compiler.  The common lisp term for what you are
referring to is "Named constants" (sec 5.1.2 of manual), and I'm afraid
you've just confused the two.

The existing code with "runtime updates to compile-time constants"
occurs even in older Interlisp code like this:
   . . . 
and in the context of the discussion, (QUOTE (MY MESSAGE ABOUT
*SOMETHING*)) is a "compile time" constant.

-- JonL --