Lisp Beginer seeking for advice

Dear Everyone,

I have been a fan for lisp for a while. But I would like to know what is the most preferable way to start learning Lisp. What is the most preferable environment setting for learning lisp? And before starting to learn Common Lisp,is it good to learn MIT's scheme beforehand?

Thanks for your advice!


Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.

Lisp is Lisp and Scheme is Scheme

It's not particularly advantageous to learn either one first, and it's not particularly useful to learn one if you really want the other. if you want to learn both, it will of course be easier than learning two unrelated languages, though it may take time to keep straight which procedure names belong to which language (although they have distinct styles of naming, so it can be done).


If you've been a "fan" of lisp as you say, you've probably not been in an environment which needed to use Common Lisp or Scheme. In that case, I'd recommend you start with DrScheme ( . Its an awesome beginner friendly environment for learning Scheme. it comes complete with tutorials that you can follow, graded languages according to your expertise level. ... and the IDE is great as well. .. and its free.

For deployment, DrScheme lets you build a package on a single click.

I've found moving between common lisp and Scheme not too hard even though I started with Scheme myself.

Peter Seibel's practical common lisp & lispbox

I found Peter Seibel's great book "Practical Common Lisp" very useful. You can find it online at
Peter uses lispbox ( to run and edit the examples.

Lisp forum