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Re: [OT] An interchange with a student

From: Pascal J. Bourguignon
Subject: Re: [OT] An interchange with a student
Date: Fri, 03 Oct 2014 22:15:25 +0200
User-agent: Gnus/5.13 (Gnus v5.13) Emacs/24.3 (gnu/linux)

Marcin Borkowski <> writes:

> Hi all,
> this is rather off-topic, but...
> I teach an introductory course in mathematics for first year (= right
> after the high school, usually) students of computer science (something
> like a "precalculus" with elements of logic, set theory, probability
> etc.).  I was talking with the students about programming languages, and
> (after I expressed my opinion about Java;-)) I was asked what language
> is better.  When I answered "Lisp", I had a (more or less) following
> interchange with one of the students:
> S: You mean Scheme or some other Lisp?
> Me: It doesn't matter that much, though Scheme is not the best one.
> What Lisp do you know?
> S: A bit of Common Lisp.
> Me: Wow.  And do you know about macros?
> S: Yes, of course.
> Me: Wow!  Who taught you Lisp?!
> S: The internet.
> Me: And what have you read?
> S: "Practical Common Lisp".
> After some time, when I expressed my opinion about the abomination which
> is a computer mouse (as opposed to good ol' keyboard interfaces), the
> very same student asked me whether I use Emacs.
> How cool is that?

There's some hope! :-)

> (I know this is only tangentially on-topic, but I just had to share this
> with someone;-).  And the sad part of the story is that I know /nobody/
> in RL who would appreciate it...)

__Pascal Bourguignon__       
“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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