What I've Learned by Conversational Styled Posts

By Xah Lee. Date:

Dan Weinreb wrote:

There are many repositories of Common Lisp free libraries, many of which you can find through links in my survey paper at http://common-lisp.net/~dlw/LispSurvey.html.

I just learned about one I had not heard about before: http://www.lispwire.com. It's sponsored by Franz but it's fine for everyone. Franz provides a link to “Allegro CL Free Express Edition” at http://www.franz.com/downloads/allegrodownload.lhtml . The libraries have been tested with Allegro but it is my impression that many of them will work with other implementations.

Kudos to Franz for sponsoring this.

There will be discussion at the International Lisp Conference about the future of Common Lisp library repositories. There's no reason we can't do something as popular and useful as, say, CPAN.

When one thinks about it, this situation of lispers not having a centralized lib depository as late as 2008, is quite stupid.

Mathematica, had mathsource.com in the early 1990s, and now merged into library.wolfram.com .

TeX's CTAN and Perl's CPAN have been around in about the same period.

I was also chagrined in recent years, to find that there is no central depository for elisp. (i wasn't surprised, however.)

Such a depository isn't hard to do. Any seasoned web developer can do it in few days, especially with today's abundance of tools. (for example, today, a full featured website for code depository with search abilities and categories etc so on, can be be literally done in a couple of days. (any company can pay me 1k USD and i'll have it up running. (please contact me)))

It is not a wonder, that non-lispers have a hard time to love or appreciate lisp, and in my opinion they are just.

Sometimes, when one considers many of the open source projects, their apparent deficiencies (when compared to commercial products for example), yet met with the most, extreme motherfaaking denial, really makes it sad. (as my experiences in advocating modernization of emacs for example. (See: Modernization of Emacs, Emacs Should Support HTML Mail, Emacs's M-‹key› Notation vs Alt+‹key› Notation, Emacs's HTML Mode Sucks. ) )

In the past about 13 years i used newsgroup, typically i don't post more than 1 or 2 messages per week (unless the group is moderated such as comp.soft-sys.math.mathematica .). (see: How Shall I Respond?) Over the years, especially post 2000, i learned that many what i'd call unix or perl morons simply don't know things, so instead of me assuming they are just to faak with me, i should not take offense and should try more explanatory approach (as opposed to simply post a summarized opinion that often criticize something and assume well educated readers).

But in this year, especially this month, i started to post freely, experimenting with a conversational style like most tech geekers are. I learned, GHASTLY, the actual degree of their ignorance. The problem becomes, to answer each and every post patiently, and in detail. (most of these newsgroup faakers don't consider what's written in the whole thread, and most simply just react to one message or hack on a single line that touched their fancy. (they actually think they are participating reasonably in a discussion with a straight face) In my 10+ years of newsgroup use, i think the number of people who actually tried to read whole thread and consider the subject as a whole, spend time to think about it from numerous aspects, including being considerate about whether they have sufficient expertise in a subject area, is countable on my fingers. Reasonable people who value their time have long abandoned newsgroups as a platform for idea exchange.)

Yesterday, i realized that i'm the #1 poster in gnu.emacs.help for this month with respect to frequency, and am #3 in comp.lang.lisp this month. LOL. Congratulations Xah! Well done.

Due to the numerousness of posting and the fact of actually conversing with each individual (many are emacs developers), there is actually a positive effect. That is, because i actually responded to each or most messages individually (and without being sarcastic or swearing), they began to think i'm serious in my views and earnestly considered points i made. And, i'd say, they began to admit implicitly, that i have some valid points (to say the least). (LOL. Quite ridiculous these cave dwellers. (imagine, a professor in subject X. Instead of publishing a book for society to read, he now has to actually patiently shake hands and say hello to each highschool students, so that these highschoolers wouldn't consider him a troll. (actually, considered broadly, that's what politicians do exactly. In election days, you see how they tour the country to shake crowd's hands and win people's votes. Politicians do that because ultimately that's what works best. It works best because ultimately the motivation of people is self-based. People are prone to like your views when they have met you, physically having touched you, or know you. Logic, reason, are supplemental.)))

The above is originally posted to newsgroup “comp.lang.lisp”.

The large emacs threads in gnu.emacs.help of this month period, mentioned in the above article, are these:

In the thread [What does 'run' do in cperl-mode? At http://groups.google.com/group/gnu.emacs.help/tree/browse_frm/thread/5b81fcfd40d1f4ca/17182640d85a09b3 , accessed on 2011-11-19 ] of 70+ messages, after the 5th one it discussed how emacs should adopt Alt+key. notation for keyboard shortcuts instead of its Meta+key.

In the thread [Can anybody tell me how to send HTML-format mail in gnus At http://groups.google.com/group/gnu.emacs.help/browse_frm/thread/9d9049c471d8764a/668ab41f3c6402d4 , accessed on 2011-11-19 ] , after the first few it discussed about whether it is good for emacs to adapt the ability to send html mail.

In the thread [How to type when using Emacs? At http://groups.google.com/group/gnu.emacs.help/browse_frm/thread/9d716d336e752e61/c73a0dcb4939fe84 , accessed on 2011-11-19 ] , after the first few messages it discusses some touch-typing ergonomics issues.