On 2017-02-21 20:18, andr...@itship.ch wrote:
Online repositories like https://github.com/taij33n/picolisp and
https://bitbucket.org/mmamkin/picolisp are not mere personal forks, but
up to date clones of the official release at
Both taij33n and mmamkin are core members of the picolisp community.
So, the github and bitbucket are mirrors, basically.
Petr, would it help if we would link and describe those repositories
prominently on picolisp.com ?
You are not asking me, but I say no.
Or do you think people don't go first to our website, but find it
directly on github/bitbucket and are turned away when they see "0
Very very true. They also notice that there is no presence on
StackOverflow. Even very very obscure stuff has loads of presence on
StackOverflow, and Stackoverflow basically rules Google. If it's
about programming and not on Stackoverflow, it basically does not
Maybe putting a prominent note into the readme at github/bitbucket could
improve this a bit...
No. It won't. It really will not.
For years, PicoLisp used to be hosted in such a online recommunity,
actually at Google Code.
Yes, but Google Code was no Github. Github is the singularity of
open source development. (As much as I dislike FB but hear me out...)
Google Code = Myspace, Github = Facebook
It's like "yeah, we did this social network thing before.
"Our band had a page on MySPACE (=Google Code)
so this Facebook (=Github) thing is totally useless."
There are two main reasons why PicoLisp development is not anymore
managed over such a service:
1) Google Code closed down. Yes, its unlikely that this will happen soon
with Github, but such offerings from big commercial companies are always
up to the moods and motivations of the company, which can change suddenly.
As a user, you're their asset, not the other way around.
True, you are their asset. But if Github closes down, how hard can it
be to migrate to something else?
The philosophy of PicoLisp is to stay in control, for long-term
stability, instead of short-term comfort by introducing dependencies.
Now we are getting to the core of your argument.
You know who else are dependencies?
People. Users. Contributors. Other software.
Yes, PicoLisp can stay core. It's finished. Of course it can't
be anything else but finished if you won't let it!
Is it a Bonsai tree in a very small pot or is it a Scalpel?
Let your child free!
Let the Scalpel out in the world and let it cut and
slash. Yes, there is bound to be cuts and bloodshed here and there.
But scalpels still mainly do good in the world.
Picolisp is 30 years old. It's time it met friends, got drunk,
got laid, and went to bad neighborhoods.
All the young people with their strange loud "rock music" and
long hair is on Github now.
2) In case of PicoLisp, the benefits such services bring (except more
visibility) are actually not needed for core PicoLisp. For reason B),
B) PicoLisp is finished software
It is old (over 30 years), well tested (in real world usage), stable and
Still though, 30 years ago it did not run on Linux, did it. The world
is not static.
Much more knowledge, both programmer experience and usage experience,
has already gone into PicoLisp compared to all those fashionable young
projects which mostly just were started very few years ago.
Yes, it has. It also went a lot of work into Cuneiform, probably more
than ReactJS. I mean, Gilgamesh was even written in it! But if something
isn't in use, and living, work doesn't matter.
We have 4 types of issues with picolisp:
1) Programmers does not see how to do something (easily). Does it wrong
or demands a feature.
Someone (nearly always Regenaxer, we need to improve here as a
community) invests time to explain the guy how it can be easily done
Nearly all issues fall into this type.
Regenaxer does not scale - these things are a PERFECT fit for
Stackoverflow. Actually, some of these Q/A sessions could probably even
be input into SO after the fact.
2) Some incompatibilities on unusual platforms (e.g. running PicoLisp on
BSD or Solaris) - usually fixed within hours or days by the guy who
asked and by the community, often even without involvement of Regenaxer.
There still is no Windows port.
There is still no Browser (asm.js) port.
3) Someone comes up with a request for a feature for special use case
which really doesn't fall into type 1), e.g. Mike/tankfeeder came up
with requirements for some special functions to do his expert algorithm
and crypto stuff.
Such requests are acknowledged and implemented by Regenaxer in few hours
or few days. Usually this all happens in IRC, or in mailing list.
This is a super power. Should be wider advertised... IMHO Regenaxer
is wasting a golden opportunity by not advertising his services on
Github and Stackoverflow. Even a simple link there to biz contact page
would be worth a bunch of Euros/Dollars in advertising.
How many other languages have their creators as easily accessible?
Therefore there is no need for any actual bug tracking management -
though an issue tracker which functions more like a dev FAQ, a
collection of problems and solutions, might be an improvement.
No, as long as your 30 year kid sits in his parents basement, of course
there is no need for an ICE number in his phone. Not much can go wrong
On the other hand, that exists on rosettacode.org!
http://rosettacode.org has PicoLisp solutions for all common tasks.
Rosettacode is awesome and whenever I see discussions ANYWHERE about
PicoLisp, Rosetta Code links get thrown around. The effort which went
into all these examples are of a BIG and on-going value.
PicoLisp still gets new features, but those are special purpose
features, or high-end optimizations of the existing features - or new
platforms. But the core is not changing much.
What we surely do need:
better documentation: the language reference is complete, but library
code and some tooling are only partially documented
Module/packaging system like Node.js or Python has with Pip?
Examples on how to dockerize Picolisp or run it on bare virtual
machines. Platforms today are not just operating systems anymore, it's
all this weird deployment technology. How do I best run Picolisp in Azure?
(I personally don't give a damn about Azure, but there sure as Death and
Taxes are going to be some who wants to know!)
more hand-holding tutorials
Never bad. 90% could/should be served on Stackoverflow.
more pointers towards IRC chat (#picolisp on freenode.org)
True, this is good.
This all could be done by newcomers even.
Does this answer some of your concerns? What can we do to improve our
communication? Other issues?
This whole rant could come off as abrasive. Maybe so, but I feel very
strongly about this and I have come to trust my gut feelings more and
more and needed to speak up.
I actually have thought similar things for years, but never spoke up,
except just a little in private communication with Regenaxer over the
years. Even if you totally disagree with me, I want you all to know I
appreciate the labor of love you all have put in over the years. I'd be
just a little bit poorer in my life as a human if PicoLisp had not
existed. I think that is why I feel so strongly, that more people should
have a chance to discover something so beautiful as PicoLisp.