Lambda the Ultimate

inactiveTopic Reynolds: The Essence of Algol
started 10/24/2002; 12:44:56 PM - last post 10/25/2002; 4:57:05 AM
Ehud Lamm - Reynolds: The Essence of Algol  blueArrow
10/24/2002; 12:44:56 PM (reads: 1751, responses: 2)
Reynolds: The Essence of Algol
John C. Reynolds. The Essence of Algol. In Jaco W. de Bakker and J. C. van Vliet, editors, Algorithmic Languages, pages 345-372, Amsterdam, 1981. North-Holland.

This classic is packed with insights about language design. It is impossible to do it justice in a few short lines.

I'll try to comment on some of the specifics later on, but I suggest you take a lookg at the paper for yourselves.

Posted to history by Ehud Lamm on 10/24/02; 12:45:57 PM

Ehud Lamm - Re: Reynolds: The Essence of Algol  blueArrow
10/24/2002; 2:22:09 PM (reads: 649, responses: 0)
The are two fundamentally different kinds of data: data types, each of which denotes a set of values appropriate for certain variables and expressions, and phrase types, each of which denotes a set of meanings appropriates for certain identifiers and phrases

This is one of the basic distinctions made in the paper, and is used throughout the paper in order to explain and define the model.

Fans of EOPL should be reminded of the distinction between expressed and denoted values.

Luke Gorrie - Connection Machine Lisp  blueArrow
10/25/2002; 4:57:05 AM (reads: 612, responses: 0)
On the topic of really wonderful papers, I've put a copy of "Connection Machine Lisp", which I mentioned a ways back, up at

It's from ACM's digital library, the original URL is

The ACM didn't respond to my request for copying permission from two months ago, so I'm opting for the "Good of humanity" default. This appears to be legal.

(I hope the money they get from the Digital Library is doing something valuable, because having to withhold great papers from friends, or feel guilty for sharing them, really sucks..)