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Re: address@hidden: Re: Roadmap and goals?]

From: Wolfgang Jährling
Subject: Re: address@hidden: Re: Roadmap and goals?]
Date: Sat, 20 Apr 2002 15:15:24 +0200
User-agent: Mutt/1.0.1i


Thien-Thi Nguyen <address@hidden> wrote:
> this was posted to guile-devel.  see archives for parent.

Even if nobody will care about my opinion anyway, I just have to respond
to this. But I'll try to keep it as short as possible. :-)

> ------- Start of forwarded message -------
> From: Nicolas Neuss <address@hidden>
> Subject: Re: Roadmap and goals?
> Date: 19 Apr 2002 10:38:06 +0200
> To: Tanel Tammet <address@hidden>
> Cc: address@hidden
> First, let me tell a little bit of my own history.  I was a C
> programmer who searched an extension language for an application.

And I'm a person trying to write a replacement for /sbin/init for the
(Hurd-based) GNU-system and I am implementing it entirely in Guile,
because I want to push Guile as the system scripting language of the GNU

> Unfortunately, all those goals are very questionable.  First, non-lisp
> languages get more and more of Lisp's capabilities[1] and the
> advantage is not large any more, especially for the spartanic Scheme
> branch.

An advantage is still an advantage, even if it is small. :-)

> Second, my guess is that most applications are written within
> one language, because maintaining the interface between two languages
> is a problem.

But there are still lots of applications where it makes sense to have an
extension language.

> Fifth, emulating languages in an integrating way is easy to say, but
> difficult to work out (this is proved by Guile not emulating one
> single other language in a reasonable way).

Coming up with a *good* solution usually takes some time.
Similar things can be observed in development of the Hurd.

> Where does Guile stand now?  In my eyes, Guile is fighting on a lost
> position.  I will elaborate a little bit on this in the following.

And I (as a mostly happy user of Guile) think it is doing fine and
direction should not change. Maybe there are other Schemes, but Guile
has different goals. Maybe Scheme has no standardized module support,
but this doesn't mean Guile can't provide module support anyway. Maybe
most Lisp-like languages will die, but we can keep Guile alive.

> [3] I do not mention GCL here, because it is not ANSI compliant, and
>     appears not to be actively developed any more.  It seems to be one
>     of those projects where you have to tell people NOT to use the FSF
>     version (similar to the Hurd kernel, and maybe Guile).

The Hurd is not a kernel, it is a userland replacement for the Unix
kernel, implemented as a collection of daemons.


Wolfgang Jährling  <address@hidden>  \\
Debian GNU/Hurd user && Debian GNU/Linux user \\
The Hurd Hacking Guide:
["We're way ahead of you here. The Hurd has always been on the    ]
[ cutting edge of not being good for anything." -- Roland McGrath ]

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