2009-02-12

Symbolics lisp machine history & programing celebrities

2009-02-12

while nosing about lisp machines, i checked out the Wikipedia article on Symbolics again:
Symbolics

it's content has improved significantly since last year or so i checked.

My firts daily use of computer or owning one is ~1991, and didn't really become pro after 1995. So, lisp machines are before my time. Though, i have already had some interest in lisp history and have strong interest in the the history of how the motherfucking unix tookover its/lisp/vms/whatnot war. Reading such history is usually not easy, because you are bombarded with many OSes or technologies that you are not familiar and really difficult to understand its situation without having lived in the tech of that era...

anyhow, check out some of the interesting tidbits in the article:

«Symbolics staffers Dan Weinreb, David Moon, Neal Feinberg, Kent Pitman, Scott McKay, Sonya Keene and others made significant contributions to the emerging Common Lisp language standard from the mid-1980s through the release of the ANSI Common Lisp standard in 1994»

There, Dan Weinred, Kent Pitman, 2 guy who still write here sometimes, are mentioned. (Kent i knew as a online acquaintance since ~2000 here. Dan i knew only last year.)

Also note how Richard Stallman, who the open sourcing or FSF fuckheads take to be a god unquestioned, who was at the time simply doing questionable deeds. (note that in general, history doesn't have a right and wrong. How came out as winner, is the hero.)

Given the Symbolic vs MIT/RMS situation, one can question what is the interpersonal relation or formal relation between these people with RMS. (in general, often many historical issue or truth cannot be discussed when the persons are still alive, for many real life complexities.)

Also of interest is tat Scott McKay, the Sun Micro guy, is there too...

O, a wee bit of rambling.

«The Graphics Division's Craig Reynolds devised an algorithm that simulated the flocking behavior of birds in flight. "Boids" made their first appearance at SIGGRAPH in the 1987 animated short "Stanley and Stella in: Breaking the Ice", produced by the Graphics Division. Reynolds went on to win the Scientific And Engineering Award from The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in 1998.»

I didn't know Boid originated from Symbolics. I remember Boid in late 1990s.
The boid in java applet is here:
http://www.red3d.com/cwr/boids/

«Advances in garbage collection techniques by Henry Baker, David Moon and others, particularly the first commercial use of generational scavenging, allowed Symbolics computers to run large Lisp programs for months at a time.»

interesting to me is seeing the name Henry Baker. He has wrote a few articles i've came cross in the past and enjoyed.

• “Buffer Overflow” Security Problems, (2001), by Henry G Baker
http://catless.ncl.ac.uk/Risks/21.84.html#subj10.1

• Communications of the ACM 34, 4 (April 1991), 18. Henry G Baker, 1990. (On the harm of speed)
http://home.pipeline.com/~hbaker1/letters/CACM-DubiousAchievement.html

• “Iterators: Signs of Weakness in Object-Oriented Languages” (1992) By Henry G Baker.
http://home.pipeline.com/~hbaker1/Iterator.html

I'm posting this to python group too, for the last article above about iterators. I whole heartedly agree to all Henry's opinions... often today's hotshot programing morons have no understanding fuck. Python 3 is going full with iterators and enumerators fuck.

i'd link to few articles i wrote pertinent to some of the above issues... but think rather not, since i've already done that often.

Xah
∑ http://xahlee.org/

No comments:

Post a Comment