Hi List :-)

> Hi Christophe,
>
>> > I'm opposed to syntax highlighting of symbols in PicoLisp.
>>
>> Wao, this is quite an introduction for a post on the list !
>> I guess that it is not spontaneous and may be triggered by a discussion
>> on IRC?
>
> Correct :) Though incidentally not IRC this time, but an e-mail
> conversation.

Maybe add a comment at the beginning regarding this, so we know too ;-)

> Anyway, this issue popped up relatively often during the last years. My
> impression was that some people naturally expect syntax highlighting, or
> even demand it, and I felt I should also make my position clear.

There is nothing to demand, People need to learn that.
Don't let them bugger you so much, Alex.

It's to be expected that people ask for things they are used to from
whatever corner of programming they come from, and we (as a community)
should surely improve the current state of documentation and availability
of knowlegde surrounding PicoLisp. But I personally don't see this as the
responsibility and personal task of Alex! The amount of work he puts into
PicoLisp and the huge efforts he makes to answer questions should be more
then enough.

PicoLisp is Free Software, so there is nothing to stop people to use it
however they like. In my eyes, this also means there is NO excuse to not
do that. No need to harass Alex, I'm pretty sure there is a way to achieve
everything with PicoLisp by doing some research (rtfm and searching the
mailinglist archive) or by hacking it together yourself.

This comment I mean not just in the context of syntax style, but also
about other "missing functionality" and "missing library" - just find a
way yourself! And then contribute something back, share it on the mailing
list or in the wiki on picolisp.com or just put it on your own web
presence. (Alex is doing exactly that all the time - some others too).

Back to topic:
There are many editors with general lisp syntax highlighting there, even
the emacs extensions in the official PicoLisp distribution contains one for picolisp.
That one I actually use, but mainly as typo-detector,
the bigger benefit I get from paredit-mode, which handles indentation and is really great for editing S-Expressions.

For other editors, there are often simple ways to even write your own
syntax highlighting config file, e.g. for nano (google for nanorc).

>> More precisely, concerning the language I’m basing on PicoLisp, which
>> is
>> dedicated to beginners, I'd like to say:
>> - Coloring transient symbols is important to help students spot quote
>> errors
>>   (which may be trivial, but can occur with people not used to
>> programming)

Good point, but then you probably want a syntax highlighting customized to
your "language based on PicoLisp", and not just for "Alex standard way to
do it". Lisp evolves with the current user, so I think thats the overall
reason why there can't be _one_right_way_.

Have all a nice day and good start into the week,
Andreas

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