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Proposed incompatible change to MacLISP FORMAT function
- To: RWK at MIT-MC
- Subject: Proposed incompatible change to MacLISP FORMAT function
- From: "Guy L. Steele, Jr." <GLS at MIT-MC>
- Date: Sat, 16 Jun 79 23:58:00 GMT
- Cc: BUG-LISP at MIT-MC
- Original-date: 16 June 1979 19:58-EDT
Date: 16 JUN 1979 0323-EDT
From: RWK at MIT-MC (Robert W. Kerns)
Date: Thu, 15 Jun 79 23:44:18 GMT
Original-Date: 06/15/79 19:44:18 EDT
From: GLS at MIT-AI
To: *CMU, *DM, *MC, *ML, *AI
Re: Proposed incompatible change to MacLISP FORMAT function
Currently NIL means "output to the standard output files" (under the
control of TYO, OUTFILES, ^W, and ^R variables), and T means "output
to the file in the TYO variable". ... to get what NIL now means, one
can use T. To get what T now means, one can use a list of T, i.e. (T).
What's wrong with using TYO to mean "output to the file in the TYO variable"?
(For that matter, why not call TYO something LISPM compatible like
CONSOLE-OUTPUT? It's probably too late, but calling the variable TYO was a
mistake, I think.) I have never used T to mean TYO, I always use TYO directly,
so this won't break any of my code on that score, although maybe the NIL might.
However, I think this change is important enough to change to make it worth
fixing the various code which will be broken. (JONL: No cracks about fixing
DRB's modes package, please!)
I forgot to mention that T means "use the value in TYO, UNDER
THE CONTROL OF THE ^W SWITCH". Hence (FORMAT '(T) ...) and
(FORMAT TYO ...) would mean slightly different things.