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...Please don't assume Lisp is only useful for Animation and Graphics, AI, Bioinformatics, B2B and E-Commerce, Data Mining, EDA/Semiconductor applications, Expert Systems, Finance, Intelligent Agents, Knowledge Management, Mechanical CAD, Modeling and Simulation, Natural Language, Optimization, Research, Risk Analysis, Scheduling, Telecom, and Web Authoring just because these are the only things they happened to list.

Kent M. Pitmanhttp://www.foldr.org/~michaelw/log/programming/lisp/reverse-complement-benchmark

And as a result we find that object-oriented languages have succumbed to static thinkers who worship perfect planning over runtime adaptability, early decisions over late ones, and the wisdom of compilers over the cleverness of failure detection and repair.

Richard P. Gabrielhttp://dreamsongs.com/ObjectsHaveFailedNarrative.html

And you're right: we were not out to win over the Lisp programmers; we were after the C++ programmers. We managed to drag a lot of them about halfway to Lisp.

Guy Steelehttp://people.csail.mit.edu/gregs/ll1-discuss-archive-html/msg04045.html

Any comparison of hot JVM languages is likely to note that "Clojure is not object-oriented." This is true, but it may lead you to the wrong conclusions. It’s a little like saying that a rifle is not arrow-oriented.

Stuart Hallowayhttp://blog.thinkrelevance.com/2009/8/12/rifle-oriented-programming-with-clojure-2

Any sufficiently complicated C or Fortran program contains an ad hoc informally-specified bug-ridden slow implementation of half of Common Lisp.

Philip Greenspunhttp://wiki.gungfu.de/Main/PhilipGreenspunsTenthRuleOfProgramming

Anyone could learn Lisp in one day, except that if they already knew Fortran, it would take three days.

Marvin Minskyhttp://bc.tech.coop/blog/071226.html

Art, engineering, and science are—in that order—part of a continuum of finding truth in the world and about ourselves.

Richard P. Gabrielhttp://www.dreamsongs.com/ArtOfLisp.html

Besides, Lisp hackers are harder to herd than cats. Throw three of them together, you’ll have at least four distinct dialects.


E-mail is for communication, twitter is for public chit-chat, mostly for teenagers and companies which try to look hip.


I am reminded of Gregor Kiczales at ILC 2003 [the International Lisp Conference] displaying some AspectJ to a silent crowd, pausing, then plaintively adding, "When I show that to Java programmers they stand up and cheer."

Kenny Tiltonhttp://bc.tech.coop/blog/071226.html

I can see why it takes a magician to discover a spell, but why can’t a non-magician use a spell once it’s known?


I use emacs, which might be thought of as a thermonuclear word processor. It was created by Richard Stallman; enough said. It is written in Lisp, which is the only computer language that is beautiful. It is colossal, and yet it only edits straight ASCII text files, which is to say, no fonts, no boldface, no underlining. In other words, the engineer-hours that, in the case of Microsoft Word, were devoted to features like mail merge, and the ability to embed feature-length motion pictures in corporate memoranda, were, in the case of emacs, focused with maniacal intensity on the deceptively simple-seeming problem of editing text. If you are a professional writer—i.e., if someone else is getting paid to worry about how your words are formatted and printed—emacs outshines all other editing software in approximately the same way that the noonday sun does the stars. It is not just bigger and brighter; it simply makes everything else vanish.

Neal Stephensonhttp://www.theserverside.com/discussions/thread.tss?thread_id=61651

I would compare the Smalltalk stuff that we did in the '70s with something like a Gothic cathedral. We had two ideas, really. One of them we got from Lisp: late binding. The other one was the idea of objects. Those gave us something a little bit like the arch, so we were able to make complex, seemingly large structures out of very little material, but I wouldn't put us much past the engineering of 1,000 years ago.

Alan Kayhttp://bc.tech.coop/blog/060224.html

If C is the closest language to modeling how computers work, Lisp is the closest to modeling how computation works.


If God used a programming language, it would be Lisp.

Programming in Lisp is like playing with the primordial forces of the universe.

It feels like lightning between your fingertips.

No other language even feels close.

Glenn Ehrlichhttp://bc.tech.coop/blog/071226.html

If Lisp was a character from Star Trek it would be Q.


If someone was to drop a bomb on this building, it would wipe out 50 percent of the Lisp community. That would probably be a good thing. It would allow Lisp to start over.

John McCarthyhttp://www.findinglisp.com/blog/2005/06/ilc-2005-wednesday-report-late.html

If you give someone Fortran, he has Fortran. If you give someone Lisp, he has any language he pleases.

Guy Steelehttp://bc.tech.coop/blog/071226.html

If you really want to snatch the pebble from the sweaty palm of the hairy Common Lisp programmer drinking dark beer in the corner, go grok keyboard macros, and then realize that all programming is writing programs that write programs.

Joseph Miklojcikhttp://jfm3-repl.blogspot.com/2007/09/emacs-tricks-6-keyboard-macros.html

Lisp - the notion of writing your code directly in tree form - is an idea that’s discovered time and again. People have tried all sorts of crazy alternatives, writing code in XML or in opaque binary formats or using cumbersome code generators. But their artificial Byzantine empires always fall into disrepair or crush themselves into collapse while Lisp, the road that wanders through time, remains simple, elegant, and pure.

Steve Yeggehttp://corfield.org/blog/post.cfm/the-joy-of-clojure

Lisp indeed leaves you with your own ideas and your own limitations. It doesn't pose any artificial restrictions on your programs that you have to work against, and it doesn't provide any "color by numbers" examples that make you feel like you have achieved something. Lisp requires you to be creative.

Pascal Costanzahttp://steve-yegge.blogspot.com/2006/04/lisp-is-not-acceptable-lisp.html?showComment=1145470320000#c114547037402357120

Lisp is a language for doing what you've been told is impossible.

Kent M. Pitmanhttp://bc.tech.coop/blog/071226.html

Lisp is the language of loveliness. With it a great programmer can make a beautiful, operating thing, a thing organically created and formed through the interaction of a programmer/artist and a medium of expression that happens to execute on a computer.

Richard P. Gabrielhttp://www.dreamsongs.com/ArtOfLisp.html

Lisp is ugly. Will always be. If you care, you're just not ready yet.

Manuel J. Simonihttp://axisofeval.blogspot.com/2010/04/that-ragged-old-lisp.html

Lisp's uglyness is like a stealth-coat, keeping it hidden from the clueless.

Manuel J. Simonihttp://axisofeval.blogspot.com/2010/04/that-ragged-old-lisp.html

Most people who graduate with CS degrees don't understand the significance of Lisp. Lisp is the most important idea in computer science. Alan's breakthrough in object oriented programming, wasn't objects, it was the realizing that the Lisp metasystem was what we needed.

Alan Kayhttp://bc.tech.coop/blog/060224.html

Parentheses? What parentheses? I haven't noticed any parentheses since my first month of Lisp programming. I like to ask people who complain about parentheses in Lisp if they are bothered by all the spaces between words in a newspaper...

Kenny Tiltonhttp://bc.tech.coop/blog/071226.html

So the problem is-I've said this about both Smalltalk and Lisp-they tend to eat their young. What I mean is that both Lisp and Smalltalk are really fabulous vehicles, because they have a meta-system. They have so many ways of dealing with problems that the early-binding languages don't have, that it's very, very difficult for people who like Lisp or Smalltalk to imagine anything else.

Alan Kayhttp://bc.tech.coop/blog/060224.html

SQL, Lisp, and Haskell are the only programming languages that I've seen where one spends more time thinking than typing.

Philip Greenspunhttp://www.paulgraham.com/quotes.html

The great problem with Lisp is that it is just good enough to keep us from developing something really good.

Alan Kayhttp://bc.tech.coop/blog/060224.html

The one thing it [Lisp] has going against it is that it is not a crystallization of style. The people who use it must have a great deal of personal style themselves. But I think if you can have one language on your system, of the ones that have been around for a while, it should be Lisp.

Alan Kayhttp://bc.tech.coop/blog/060224.html

There are two kinds of programmers: ones who have read SICP, and ones who haven't.


These languages will never be mainstream, because the mainstream would never see the benefits they provide. The mainstream would kill themselves with such power. There's a reason the mainstream likes manifest typing, procedural programming, and cut and paste methodologies, quite simply, it's all they can handle.


To iterate is human, to recurse divine.

L. Peter Deutsch

Turns out the border between genius and insanity is a pretty cheery place.

Paul Grahamhttp://landoflisp.com/

Where's the domain specific language for the domain of software programming?


With lisps you don't program applications - you program programming languages to program applications.

Steffen Glückselig

XML—which amounts to some fundamental Lisp data structures reinterpreted by people with bad taste brainwashed by inflexibility.

Richard P. Gabrielhttp://www.dreamsongs.com/ArtOfLisp.html

You can't possibly cons too much on this new machine!

John McCarthyhttp://lispy.wordpress.com/2008/10/22/lisp50-notes-part-ii-model-view-controller-considered-harmful/

You're posting to a Scheme group. Around here, arguing that Java is better than C++ is like arguing that grasshoppers taste better than tree bark.


[Lisp is] "the greatest single programming language ever designed"

Alan Kayhttp://bc.tech.coop/blog/060224.html
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