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- To: common-lisp-object-system@SAIL.STANFORD.EDU
- Subject: Consistency
- From: Dick Gabriel <RPG@SAIL.STANFORD.EDU>
- Date: 19 Feb 87 1752 PST
At this point I'm worried about a couple of new things: first, that
the Common-Lisp-skeptics will accuse us of doing to object-oriented
programming what we did to Lisp: obfuscate and ruin it; second, that
the proposal might be in jeopardy because it is too complex.
The people at Tektronix had no trouble understanding what I said, nor
did they fail to understand CLOS. They were appalled at the complexity
and questioned whether that complexity was necessary.
I'm suggesting, also, that maybe the organization of the system
should be made to reflect the proposed organization of the document.
The point would be to make CLOS less intimidating to the new user.
I still believe that we are writing a specification, and it would be wrong
to put fluffy, imprecise language into the document. I think from my
comments about Moon's errata you can still see this attitude. And if you
compared the draft material as of 2 weeks ago with the current draft you
will see a major movement towards consistency and preciseness, even at the
expense of pretty language - it may not be perfect, but a lot of
what was there before was embarrassingly bad.
When I decide to write things using mathematical notation, for example, it
is because I cannot think of how to unambiguously express the concepts in
English. (Also, if the concepts were simpler, they could be expressed in
prose more easily.)
I must admit a little bit second-thinking about CLOS and how much
more time I can justify putting into it.