On Monday, 14 January 2019 at 03:58:37 UTC, Mike Franklin wrote:
What I wonder is, with design by introspection and the right mix of other language features (e.g. `alias`, `alias this`, mixins, etc...), what traditional language features can be removed from the compiler and delegated to library facilities? For example, https://theartofmachinery.com/2018/08/13/inheritance_and_polymorphism_2.html

Because design by introspection allows us to "assemble programs atomically", perhaps high-level language features like classes and interfaces can become obsolete, and the language itself can be reduced simpler primitives that don't require the overhead of a runtime.


Scheme is probably the language that takes this idea of a minimal "core language" with powerful metaprogramming facilities the furthest, and the result is a fragmented ecosystem that makes writing portable, non-trivial programs close to impossible. (See "The Lisp Curse" [1].)

When something like an object system is made part of the language (or at the very least, the standard library), it becomes a focal point [2] that the community can coordinate around. Due to the diverse, distributed nature of any programming-language community, trying to coordinate through explicit communication is not really a viable option, so having these kinds of focal points is very important if we want to be able to work together on anything.

[1] http://winestockwebdesign.com/Essays/Lisp_Curse.html
[2] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Focal_point_(game_theory)

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