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Re: Generative record types

|   Date: Thu, 25 Apr 96 11:52:27 -0400
|   From: Gerald Jay Sussman <gjs@martigny.ai.mit.edu>
|   Cc: rrrs-authors@martigny.ai.mit.edu
|   I know that this sounds reactionary, but I persist in viewing
|   computational processes as living organisms, which often contain
|   valuable information.  There are times to kill them and to reconstruct
|   them genetically (from a textual program) and there is time to do
|   surgery or other in vivo experiments.  I have consistently held this

I also want to be able to perform X-rays, even if no surgery is involved.

|   view since the I started thinking about computation.  The problem is
|   that this vision appears to be in direct conflict with the real need
|   to obtain safety and reliability by erecting firewalls that dominates
|   the software engineering scene.  Probably, the kind of experimental
|   programming that I enjoy and depend upon is just incompatable with a 
|   language structure that can be used for software engineering, sigh.

I don't think the need is real, although it is a common dogma in
computer science departments.

The other forms of engineering are older and far more successful at
reuisng pieces and building reliable objects.  Yes, the complexity
might be different (although I would venture to say that the
complexity of a modern microprocessor or airplane is not lesser than
the complexity of most programs), however, they have not resorted to
this firewall nonsense, and I'm quite certain they would be horrified
if it were proposed.