Advanced Programming Environments. was: A CodeDOM-Aware Generative IDE

From: Michael Warnock (
Date: Sat Jun 15 2002 - 12:46:49 MDT

6/15/2002 10:28:51 AM, "Ben Houston" <> wrote:

>> > Does anyone know of other environments/languages that have more
>> > developed this type of development paradigm?
>> Gosh, I don't know... lisp???
It amazes me every time a new, well marketted, language or IDE comes out everyone starts extolling its new Lispy
virtue as though its like had never been seen before by man.

The code generation Ben H is talking about using in C# is, as has already been pointed out, very similar to Lisp macros.
But Lisp has other features that make code generation easier and more generalizable. For instance all the symbols
(variables) are pointers, but can be compared and manipulated like standard variables of the same type in C. The
functions are all lists, manipulable with standard data ops. Also there are no statements, only expressions. The way in
which this helps is rather hard for me to explain, even to myself, but it is definately helpful when you have code
generators producing code generators, producing code:)
For more info on why Lisp is still the most "powerful" programming language, read:

I personally am currently designing my own lisp dialect. The big difference with my dialect, called Zippered Lisp, is that
instead of the basic data structures being atoms in lists, they will be cells in dimensions. See Ted Nelson's ZigZag
(, for more info on this wild data structure.

Once its basically completed, I'll be integrating it with the opensource MMORPG libraries, Nel (
which I've been working with at my failing game startup for a couple years now.

So in the end, I hope to have the most powerful computer language yet invented working with the most powerful
generalizable data structure I can find, and a cutting edge massively multiuser 3d environment for the programs I write
to run around in.

What do the programmers of the list think? What are your pet data structures? Do you think its more valuable for
creating AGI to have the perfect programming environment or the most well understood/used/available one?

Michael Warnock
(Long time lurker, first time poster)

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