Talk:Macsyma

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Macsyma as a[edit]

Macsyma as a Common Lisp program: today you would likely use a Common Lisp version of Macsyma. Maclisp is long gone. In the page there are mentioned the implementations in Gold Hill Lisp (which is a Common Lisp) and CLOE (Common Lisp Operating Environment). Maxima is also written in Common Lisp. Common Lisp was designed to be backwards compatible, so that ancient software like Macsyma can be ported with relatively little effort. Anybody now using Macsyma and derivatives (and not looking at the historical ancient Macsyma) would see a Common Lisp program and would try it in a Common Lisp implementations. -- RJ (comment by 85.182.78.172 at 2007-12-22T13:42:47)

Yes, I agree that Common Lisp is largely backwards compatible with MacLisp (in which Macsyma was written), and indeed most old Lisp programs can be moved to Common Lisp without too much difficulty. So I suppose if you're interested in a catalogue of software which can be run under Common Lisp, Macsyma qualifies. But Wikipedia is not a software catalogue, it is an encyclopedia; if you're interested in the programming style and history of Macsyma, it's bizarre to say that it's a Common Lisp program. After all, almost all Unix/Linux programs can run under Windows (using cygwin etc.); should we then say that grep is a "Windows program"? That seems silly. --Macrakis (talk) 07:01, 23 December 2007 (UTC)