Re: [SL4] Flare, and the need for it.

From: Eliezer S. Yudkowsky (
Date: Sat Mar 04 2000 - 23:54:37 MST

From: "Eliezer S. Yudkowsky" <>

"Eliezer S. Yudkowsky" wrote:
> It's possible to write shallow LISP programs in C, but not deep ones.
> Same goes for writing Flare programs in LISP.

Let me amplify on that: It's possible to, for example, write shallow
Flare programs in, say, LISP, by using property lists as basic Flare
symbols. For example, one could represent:



 (".value" 4)
 (".metadata" reference-to-whatever)
 ("green" (".value" 5) (".metadata" reference-to-whatever) )
 ("red" (".value" "snap") (".metadata" reference-to-whatever) )

And then go on to write tortuous code that, in essence, carries out the
motions of a Flare interpreter by hand. It would be analogous to
writing C++ programs in C by writing, say:

(*reinterpret_cast<FOO_FUNC_PTR>(item->vtab[FOO_FUNC_INDEX]))(arg1, arg2)

 instead of

item->foo(arg1, arg2)

with all inheritance and such done by whatever hacked-up functions your
mind cares to imagine.

You can always write the low-level elements of a high-level language as
high-level structures in a lower-level language. A high-level structure
in a high-level language generally cannot be developed in any simpler form.

--      Eliezer S. Yudkowsky

                 Member, Extropy Institute
           Senior Associate, Foresight Institute
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