In article <email@example.com>, firstname.lastname@example.org (Mark A
> Lisp machines died because their
> functionality was supplanted by other more general purpose machines.
> Example: My former roomate (mid-80's) was a chip designer. He had
> two giant systems on his desk, a lisp machine (TI Explorer?) and
> an Apollo. He was always complaining about how inconvenient it
> was that part of his work was done on the lisp machine (chip design)
> and that the rest was done on the Apollo (word processing, email,
> manufacturing apps). When their software group was able to port
> their applications to the same box their other applications ran
> on, they dropped the lisp machine without hesitation.
This is complete BS. The lisp machines had fabulous email systems,
and Symbolics went to a great deal of trouble to make TeX run on its
Lisp Machine. The Symbolics Lisp Machine documentation was generated and
edited on Lisp Machines. Perhaps TI bought the wrong Lisp Machines ? ;-) ;-)
A number of the features of Emacs the people know and love today were first
developed and used on Lisp Machines. Much of the productivity of Symbolics
customer service depended upon a sophisticated email system.
You can argue about whether a machine as expensive as the Symbolics Lisp
Machines should have been doing email, but that is an entirely different
question from whether they did it. Yes, they did.