December 06, 2004
Casting SPELs: A Lisp Comic

casting spels in lisp comic by conrad barski

It's already all over the lisposphere, but that's why they call me Ol' Reliable: I really like Conrad Barski's tutorial Lisp comic, “Casting SPELs in Lisp”.

You have to admire someone with the chutzpah to teach complete Lisp beginners about macros. I do find it a little ironic, though, that the very first line of code(second, if you count the ACL-specific setting of *print-length*) is one with unspecified behavior, the discussion of which has led to many long comp.lang.lisp threads:

(setf *objects* '(whiskey-bottle bucket frog chain))

whiskey bottle, check

Whiskey bottle, check. bucket, check. frog, chain, check. It's like Conrad somehow got a snapshot of my brain while I was hacking.

Posted by jjwiseman at December 06, 2004 02:23 PM

It's kind of a chicken/egg problem: SPELs (oh, c'mon, humor me...) are arguably the best reason to use lisp, but also arguably the hardest to learn...

Posted by: Conrad Barski on December 6, 2004 03:42 PM

Is it a coincidence that the wizard looks like he's been trepanned? I think not.

Posted by: atom on December 6, 2004 06:47 PM

Come to think of it, a trepanned alcoholic wizard is probably the best lisp teacher you could have.

Posted by: atom on December 6, 2004 06:50 PM

He does, doesn't he? You know, there's just something about bald cartoon characters where you have to draw an X on their forehead or their head just looks too flat... or maybe its my imagination :)

Posted by: Conrad Barski on December 6, 2004 10:02 PM
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