CLIM mail archive


Re: do geometry operations work?

  Date: Fri, 6 Mar 1992 10:18-0500
  From: Scott McKay <>
  Subject: do geometry operations work?
  To:,, clim@BBN.COM


   (3) What things would you give up in order to support (1) or (2).  That
       is, what is less important?  Examples of things to trade off
       against include support for gadgets, support for fast low-level
       drawing optimizations, support for "color maps", and so forth.

I'd much rather have CLIM do a few things well than to try to do
everything in a mediocre fashion.  Complex region code is neat but
the proportion of applications that would use it is (from my point
of view) relatively small.  I'd like to see:

(1) Correctness.  Symbolics (Scott McKay) seems to be doing the lion's
    share of this.  Do any of the other vendors contribute manpower to this
    critical area?  

(2) Speed.  Portable user interface code that is also fast will give
    Common Lisp a feature that most competing languages dont have.

I have witnessed some pressure to abandon Lisp in favor of C and other
"less exotic" languages that are fast.  I personally believe that CLIM
may be Lisp's salvation, if it can achieve speed and correctness.
I would refer you all to the article by Dick Gabriel from AI Expert
(June 91), "LISP: good news, bad news, how to win big."

  "The big complex system scenario goes like this.  First, the
  right thing needs to be designed.  Then its implementation
  needs to be designed.  Finally, it is implemented.  Because
  it is the right thing, it has nearly 100% of desired functionality,
  and implementation simplicity was never a concern so it takes
  a long time to implement.  It is large and complex.  It
  requires complex tools to use properly.  The last 20% takes
  80% of the effort, so the right thing takes a long time to
  get out, and it only runs satisfactorily on the most
  sophisticated hardware."

Sound familiar?  The bottom line is that we could spend
forever adding various neat features.  In the mean time, those of us
who have a product to put out will be forced into taking
Motif and C++ classes.


jeff morrill


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