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[firstname.lastname@example.org: Re: Standardization]
Here is the latest reply from Fateman. As I read it, he is apparently
feeling about the whole thing; maybe he at last believes that the
technical committee is not going to try simply to railroad the 1984 book
through with absolutely no changes.
Date: Mon, 24 Mar 86 13:33:00 PST
From: email@example.com (Richard Fateman)
From gls@THINK-AQUINAS.ARPA Mon Mar 24 12:57:43 1986
Thanks for your response. I didn't mean to impugn your motives, but I think
that the result of the Common LISP effort to date, interesting and useful
as it is, is just a prelude to what is required for a standard.
I hope the language standards committees are not as contentious as
the floating point; if they are, the effort simply could not terminate
in our lifetimes.
A standard is defined in terms of "shall", "will", "may", "must" etc.
We fell short of saying these things because of the need for readable
material. And also because we disagreed and didn't want to say so,
That any language definition is further refined by implementation
seems inevitable. That is not a bad thing.
I also agree that to start out with a clean slate would be a mistake.
I am certain that no one on the technical committee has the purpose of
simply stonewalling with the current Common Lisp definition against
either other US interests or Lisp experts in other countries.
Fahlman, Gabriel, and I, in particular, have been working hard
to interest people outside the US in contributing to the ANSI
effort and to negotiate ways in which, for
example, the Common Lisp and Eulisp communities can cooperate.
I think this is fine; I did, however, hear Mathis' argument for ANSI
as "If you don't do it, someone else will, and the US gov't believes
in standards." This carried the day, in my opinion.
Best of luck, in any case.