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Re: if vs. when vs. and: style question


From: Pascal J. Bourguignon
Subject: Re: if vs. when vs. and: style question
Date: Sat, 28 Mar 2015 13:47:24 +0100
User-agent: Gnus/5.13 (Gnus v5.13) Emacs/24.3 (gnu/linux)

Rusi <address@hidden> writes:

> On Saturday, March 28, 2015 at 4:32:46 AM UTC+5:30, Pascal J. Bourguignon 
> wrote:
>> Emanuel Berg  writes:
>> 
>> > Hey... Why don't you Unicode and FP lovers do a new
>> > editor called "Uhacs" (for Unicode, Haskell, and
>> > Emacs) - the best thing with this editor is the
>> > development time, which is actually zero. Because when
>> > you start working on it, the result is a side-effect,
>> > which is intolerable by definition, so you have to
>> > stop :) Wait... oups, I did it again! But that joke
>> > wasn't rude, was it? Rather, it is funny because it is
>> > true :)
>> 
>> Well, yes and no.
>> 
>> That is, you can make the joke about purely functional systems running
>> on Von Neuman archiectures, where anything is done only with side
>> effects.
>
> "Functional" has been a rather moving target in the last 50 years:
>
> Recently came across this interview of John McCarthy
> http://www.infoq.com/interviews/Steele-Interviews-John-McCarthy
>
> In the 1st question he says he learnt functional programming from Backus'
> Fortran. Even to someone who is a bit of an old-timer like myself, this view 
> is amazing.  Younger kids dont even get how shocking is being said here:
> When I mentioned this on the Haskell list someone (only) connected it with
> Backus' Turing award lecture.
>
> Whereas if one reads the Turing award lecture, clearly Backus is doing 
> penitence
> for the 'sin' of inventing Fortran, 20 years after the invention.
>
> And yet one needs to admit that in 1957 Fortran was a functional language --
> the very name carries that intention.
> By 1977 that stand needed a very public withdrawal.
>
> And so in summary:
> In 1957 For(mula Tran(slator) was the (one and only) functional language
> 1960 Lisp
> 60s Lisp+APL
> 70s ML, Also 'theoretical languages' like ISWIM
> 80s Lazy languages FPLs like SASL, KRC, Miranda start appearing
> While the landmark SICP is from 80s, we also have the beginning rumbles saying
> Lisp has retarded the progress of functional programming and CS education
> by 10 years [David Turner, Phil Wadler]
> [Interestingly it appears that in the late 80s McCarthy said Lisp was not
> functional]
> 90s Haskell
> This century: Some unexpected resurgence of Lisp as functional -- CLojure
>
> I am ready to bet that 20 years from now Haskell wont be regarded as a
> properly functional language.
>
> Beginning rumbles: Bob Harper's Haskell is exceptionally unsafe
>
> [Seems to be removed, heres an archive version
> https://web.archive.org/web/20150102135555/https://existentialtype.wordpress.com/2012/08/14/haskell-is-exceptionally-unsafe/
> ]

Ah good.  So I guess I can avoid learning Haskell, I'll wait for the
next stable functional language.  In the meantime lisp goes strong as it
has for more than 56 years.  I'll stay with lisp.

:-)

-- 
__Pascal Bourguignon__                 http://www.informatimago.com/
“The factory of the future will have only two employees, a man and a
dog. The man will be there to feed the dog. The dog will be there to
keep the man from touching the equipment.” -- Carl Bass CEO Autodesk


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