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- To: Dave.Touretzky at CMU-10A
- From: KMP at MIT-MC (Kent M. Pitman)
- Date: Mon, 23 Feb 81 17:45:00 GMT
- Cc: (BUG LISP) at MIT-MC, Paul.Hilfinger at CMU-10A
- Original-date: 23 FEB 1981 1245-EST
I made no statement of the form ``X should not be done because
it is a pain to implement'' nor did I say ``X should not be done
because it requires an amount of extra code/memory.'' Neither do
I believe these to be good reasons not do do things in a language.
What I *did* do was to offer an explanation of why what seems
to you conceptually elegant is probably not really treated in your
mind as so natural a thing. I was using the code needed to mechanically
execute such a form as a measure of conceptual naturalness. I think
there is philosophical basis for doing this in many applications.
Ugliness in any system can often be traced to the number of special
cases that it takes to hold the system together.
You asked for a reason for not having done it your way, and that's what
you have. Now, the reason for not changing it is another issue. That's
simply a matter of not breaking things. So we aren't really arguing on