Interesting: "Lisp as a competitive advantage"

Pierpaolo BERNARDI
Thu, 3 May 2001 09:40:02 +0200 (MET DST)

On Wed, 2 May 2001 wrote:

> Second, more interestingly, I was surprised at his emphasis on macros.
> Having read his (excellent) On Lisp maybe I shouldn't have been (since
> that is largely about macros), but anyway, I think it's interesting
> because it's one of the big differences between Lisp and the
> statically typed languages (STLs).

Here's a lisper's opinion:

I think that the importance of macros is overrated in the lisp community.
Macros are great if all you have is a traditional, first order language,
they are not so essential if you have HOFs. In Haskell there are better
ways than macros to solve the problems macros solve in Lisp.

The real productivity booster of Lisp is its syntax. The fact that Lisp
syntax makes easy to implement a macro system is a secondary benefit.

And syntax is, IMHO, the point that more modern functional languages get
wrong (yes, I know that this is controversial, and many non-lispers have
strong objections to this statement. No need to remember me). 

Pierpaolo   (ducking)