[OT] Re: Who modified my local variable?

Levi Pearson levi at cold.org
Tue Jun 13 16:46:31 MDT 2006

On Jun 13, 2006, at 4:24 PM, Michael L Torrie wrote:

> ... Things like lambda expressions
> allow you to do all kinds of need things that are intellectually
> appealing, clean, and logical, even if they aren't necessarily  
> efficient
> from the CPU's point of view.  Seems to me that "conventional"  
> languages
> end up sacrificing proper computer science in order to better utilize
> our current computer architectures (a good trade-off).  LISP  
> techniques
> provide a certain elegance that are very appealing.  Now a coder would
> probably find himself hindered by LISP-isms.

Actually, lambda expressions were used to debunk the myth of the  
expensive procedure call[1], which helped the adoption of the  
structured programming languages that we all use today.  The elegance  
of lambda expressions isn't just appealing from an aesthetic  
viewpoint, but their mathematical properties make it straightforward  
to implement program transformations that can make programs better  
suited for our computers[2].


[1]: http://library.readscheme.org/servlets/cite.ss?pattern=Ste-77  
"Debunking the 'Expensive Procedure Call' Myth, or, Procedure Call  
Implementations Considered Harmful, or, Lambda: The Ultimate GOTO -  
Guy Lewis Steele, Jr."

[2]: http://mumble.net/~kelsey/papers/comp-by-prog-trans.ps.gz  
"Realistic Compilation by Program Transformation - Richard A. Kelsey  
with Paul Hudak"

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