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Suggested new lambda-list syntax
- To: LISP-FORUM at MIT-MC
- Subject: Suggested new lambda-list syntax
- From: David A. Moon <MOON at MIT-MC>
- Date: Wed ,23 Sep 81 20:28:00 EDT
- Cc: RMS at MIT-AI
I think &OPTIONAL, &REST, &AUX, and &KEY are quite different from the other
lambda-list keywords. Those four keywords delimit boundaries between
various sublists, which could have been written as separate lists except
that that would be a mess. Your proposal doesn't really apply sensibly to
those four keywords. For other ones like "E, &SPECIAL, etc. it would
be an improvement.
A separate point: I don't think it makes sense to complicate the syntax in
order to get rid of the reserved words. Reserved words in this context cause
no harmful effects, whereas a syntax with more parentheses and more noise
words would decrease readability, and in a very central, heavily-used part
of the language too.
The reserved words could be :-prefixed rather than &-prefixed except that
:-prefixed keywords can sometimes be EQ to ordinary symbols, which -would-
make the reserved words difficult to live with.