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what should RnRS be all about?
Date: Mon, 1 Jun 92 17:19:26 -0400
From: "Gerald Jay Sussman" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
The problem here is exactly as Bill Rozas suggests. My process is a
living and evolving organism. It is only an artifact of our present
primitive development that we reboot machines every day and we restart
Scheme every time we want to fix a major bug. I must be able to
repair it when broken. I must be able to augment a running system
with new patches.
I imagine a time when we have processes for which the data developed
during running has taken 20 years to create. That is why it is a
crime to murder a human. The data is too valuable to lose by a
cold-boot. Programmers will have to be physicans.
Unfortunately, computers and disks do not last 20 years. Lisps tend
to be very ephemeral in that you often can't save your session.
George Carrette has suggested that we could make a FASLOAD format
which would be portable between machines and implementations. I am
not sure how far this can go, but for structures composed of vectors,
lists, symbols, booleans, strings, characters, and numbers it
certainly seems doable.
Such a FASLOAD format would greatly enhance the ability to do surgery,
even if it meant moving to a new machine (brain transplant).