May 05, 2002
Norvig/Lisp/Python and Easy GUIs

Peter Norvig posts about Python and lisp:

For those who are interested in programming real AI applications, rather than just understanding the algorithms in a course setting, I continue to recommend Lisp, and to recommend against Python (unless you're willing to code some extensions in C).

And then

And for Duane and his employer, let me say that if there was a standard, easy to use Common Lisp GUI package that was portable across Windows, several flavors of Unix, and possibly Mac, then I would never have started looking at Python. Really the only answer to "what can Python do that Lisp can't" that matters to me is "put up a window in a portable way".

That would, indeed, be nice. I'm not sure what the best way to make it happen is. Maybe some simple GUI library that just implements the simplest widgets, expressly not for industrial strength applications. Strive to make it possible to write a backend for a particular lisp platform/native GUI in 3 days, then write the backends. Ideally, lisp vendors just love the idea and include the library in such a way that all people would have to do to use it is (require :simple-gui). Only slightly more realistically, the simple-gui website could have a page listing the various implementations and corresponding bits of code to be pasted into the listener to download and install the library.

Posted by jjwiseman at May 05, 2002 02:02 PM

FunctionalObjects has the DUIM (Dylan User Interface Manager), which was open-sourced in its GTK incarnation. It's part of Gwydion Dylan currently (though it's by no means optimized.)

I wonder if something in this vein might be useful for Lisp languages.

The only other option I know of is PLT Scheme's GUI framework, which I don't particularly care for. I may change my mind if I ever actually used it for something, but so far it lacks the stylistic coolness of the DUIM design (which is highly functional in nature.)

Posted by: Brent Fulgham on May 22, 2002 04:43 PM

DUIM (Dylan) is a simplified version of CLIM (Lisp), which was a simplified version of Dynamic Windows (Lisp).

People are currently working on FreeCLIM, a "free" version of CLIM.

The author of DUIM (who was also a primary author of CLIM) has expressed interest in porting DUIM to Lisp.

Btw., CLIM is not really ideal, but it is available for several different Lisp versions and different platforms (X11, Windows, MacOS 9). For example LispWorks for Windows (Professional) comes with CLIM.

Posted by: Rainer Joswig on May 24, 2002 10:58 AM
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