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Re: Motivation for PARSE-BODY
- To: gls@Think.COM
- Subject: Re: Motivation for PARSE-BODY
- From: Masinter.pa@Xerox.COM
- Date: Wed, 30 Jul 1986 14:46:00 -0000
- Cc: common-lisp@su-ai.ARPA
- In-reply-to: Guy Steele <gls@Think.COM>'s message of Wed, 30 Jul 86 13:01 EDT
I refer you to the compatibility note on pp 364-365 in a book written by
some random fellow, where there was a claim that "This design is an
attempt to make the reader as simple as possible to understand, use, and
implement." and "It is unnecessary, however, to cater to more complex
lexical analysis or parsing than that needed for Common Lisp."
Even if PARSE-BODY were as generally useful as, say, splicing reader
macros, the argument that it should be in Common Lisp because it >might
be convenient< for writers of embedded languages is a very weak one.
As has been pointed out, anyone who wants to write an embedded language
can write their own PARSE-BODY trivially relying only on MACROEXPAND and
a few CONSes and EQLs. Maybe we could even put PARSE-BODY it in the
(whatever-happened-to-the) yellow pages.
Just as Common Lisp doesn't provide built-in support for BNF parsing,
there's no reason to put something as awkward as parse-body into the