In <firstname.lastname@example.org>, email@example.com (Henry Baker) wrote:
> Lisp is the ultimate 'fractal' language, because it is good at all levels,
> from microcode to shell scripts.
This is more a property of the implementations than the language per
se. You also get help from the name "LISP" being so flexible. Last
time I looked, the shortest and longest ANSI language specs were both
for LISP (is that still true?).
Without a high-quality compiler (or microcode generator), it wouldn't
be a good language for "systems programming" (or writing microcode.
Without the typing aids one finds in LISP implementations, it doesn't
make a good QAD hacking language
That the language has good support for programming in the large makes
it possible to build implementations that are good for programming in
Given that support, it's possible to build implementations of any
given language that are good for all those environments.
The interesting question is then why has the LISP community
fractalized this way whereas most other programming languages
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