Vadim Antonov's Grail

David Jeske
Tue, 5 Jan 1999 11:50:28 -0800

On Tue, Jan 05, 1999 at 07:15:25PM +0100, Laurent Martelli wrote:
> Something like Lisp's lists seem sufficient to build any data
> structure that you may dream of. 

a stream of bits is sufficient to build any data-structure you may
dream of, yet it might not be the right abstraction for the job.

Lisp's lists are not suited to building any data-structure, for
reasons that yourself pointed out with a C example. Just like your
exmple of not being able to extract parallelism out of a C for() loop
because the for loop implies sequential execution, there are
optimizations which you can not extract out of a list in Lisp because
of the things it implies.

What if I don't need the 'order' that a LISP list provides? Too bad,
it's there anyhow. If I build something like an associative array out
of lisp lists, it will be riddled with implications which were not

David Jeske (N9LCA) + +