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Re: lisp vs apl

We had a lisp/apl bboard war locally half a year or so ago;
it consisted mostly of quips, rather than flames as in the 
present case, but occasioned some thoughts on the subject
nonetheless.  APL in its early (APL\360) form was much more
a diamond than it is now: modern APLs with quad-variables
and -functions and filesystems and so forth are actually
as much balls of mud as many lisps--you might think of
lambda-calulus as a diamond too.  For my money the major
differences between the languages are not hard to find:
syntax and semantics.  APL is good for problems that can
be solved in a day or less, and indeed in APL you can do 
some pretty amazing things in a day or less.  I would sit
down at a bare APL with problems that would require signi-
ficant programming in LISP.  On the other hand, for my 
money, APL has some awkwardnesses when it comes to building
large systems.  My analogy, instead of diamonds and mudballs,
would be of a set of snap-lock panels and struts as opposed
to a set of bricks and mortar.  I wouldn't want to be caught
in the rain with hod and trowel in hand, but at the same
time I'll use them for more permanent structures.
These comments are relative only;  I'd take either LISP or
APL over most other languages/programming systems I've seen.
And both are painfuly out of date compared with what we 
ought to have by now.