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R4RS changes? Code?
Several people (myself included) have posted requests for large
Scheme programs, with disappointing results. Apparently relatively few
people use Scheme for really serious development, and very few write
portable (e.g., R3RS) Scheme code.
I was wondering if this is likely to change over the next couple of
years, perhaps as a result of a more completely standardized language.
When is the R4RS likely to come out, and what is it likely to standardize?
Will a macro facility be standardized? Dynamic or fluid variables? These
seem to me to be the most important Lisp features not specified by
the R3RS. Is there a consensus growing as to how either of these should
be done, or is it too early to settle on a standard?
Whatever the answer is, what does it imply for the future of Scheme? Will
it be a "toy" language forever, like unextended Pascal? Or will it
eventually be a medium-sized language with a lot of available libraries,
like C? (And will it be a family of incompatible languages, like Pascal,
or take over the world, like C? :-).
Right now, I need to guess whether there will be sufficient programs
available within two years to gather performance data for some implementation
techniques. If not, I may have to go with another language for some of
the things I need to do, and that could be painful.
Paul R. Wilson
Human-Computer Interaction Laboratory
U. of Illin. at C. EECS Dept. (M/C 154) email@example.com
Box 4348 Chicago,IL 60680