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Re: [Axiom-developer] Catching up on internals

From: gad9972
Subject: Re: [Axiom-developer] Catching up on internals
Date: Wed, 1 Nov 2017 18:05:33 +0000

On 31 Oct 2017 12:29 p.m., "Tim Daly" <address@hidden> wrote:

What possible advantage would it be to have the interpreter in Spad?

Assuming you want to move away from Lisp you would also have to
code the compiler in Spad.


Well, at least it would be a first step in moving away from lisp. I would really like more mainstream base language that supports parallel code and more powerful libraries for graphics and so on. I think parallel code is very important, I think mathematics has a lot of inherent parallelism (vectors for example).

The main issue is that I find it extremely difficult to work out what a given piece of Lisp/boot code does. If I look at a given function there is  no clues about the structure of its parameters or what  variables are being used or what they are used for. I think it's because Lisp/boot uses a single type (feels like dynamic typing) and global variables it is very hard to understand code. I suspect your answer to this might be documentation and I agree that documentation is very important but I don't think it's a fix for spaghetti code.

I understand that Lisp is an epiphany language (i.e. you hate it until
you "get it" and then you love it) 

I can see that Lisp is quite mathematical (lambda calculus) and I can see that it allows the original programmer to be very creative, but when trying to understand other peoples code, creative is not what I need. I want a language with meaningful types and minimal global variables.

Sorry, I didn't mean this to be a discussion about the pros and cons of various languages. I am sure we won't change each others mind about this. I just wanted to explain why I'm keen to find a way to convert boot to SPAD as discussed on my web page.

Martin B

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