Happy Birthday, dear Lambda

Believe it or not, Lambda the Ultimate is five years old! Wow.

If someone would have told me five years ago that LtU will be around that long, I'd call him crazy. I still remember trying to recruit new members and trying to spread the word. Today? The number of members increases daily, whether I like it or not...

It's gratifying to see that many of the original members are still active, and that many members have their own specific roles in our virtual community. It's great to see people's interests and voice evolve over time, as well as to welcome guests and more occasional visitors.

Since moving to the new site (thanks Anton!) the membership and readership have increased dramatically. A rapid increase of this kind can undermine the norms and culture of a community, but I think we are doing fine, thanks mainly to the tone set by the LtU regulars. From time to time we may slip and the tone gets a little harsh, but what can you expect when static typing is being discussed? Overall, I think we are handling the growth remarkably well, and the new members make the dicussion more interesting and diverse.

The discussion group has become much more active than it was in the past, due to the increased readership. This is a good thing, of course, but I hope the blog can keep up. Being extremely busy prevents me to contribute new stories as often as I want, but I was glad to see how many volunteered to become editors. Now all they have to do is start posting more often..

Thanks again, guys. LtU keeps surprising and informing me, and frankly, what more can you ask for?


As some of you already saw, people are trying to spam the LtU forum.

I deleted the spam message that appeared earlier today, and blocked the user that posted it.

Beacuse the popularity of LtU has increased, spammers are likley to be more interested in us than in the past. In order to kill this in the bud, I am going to be more aggressive in the treatment of spam, and supposedly spam, messages than in the past.

If you have any doubts about the appropriateness a message you want to publish, don't hesitate to get in touch with me.

LtU needs you!

It seems that the LtU community has grown quite a bit recently, and the editorial team has to play catch-up.

If you are regular reader, and follow programming related news from other venues (e.g., online discussion groups, departmental seminar, read published paper for fun), how about joining the team and posting relevant items to the home page?

If you are interested, please get in touch with me via email.

PLT Needs You!

PLT needs your help. From the mailing list:

Financial support for our implementation and infrastructure work is running out over the next year. I am hoping to raise money from the National Science Foundation (NSF) with a proposal to the infrastructure initiative. The purpose of this initiative is to help with the maintenance of projects that are useful in research and advanced development, but also teaching and education. The emphasis is on the former two; the latter two are acknowledged, and I don't think we need to worry about the latter.

So, if you have used DrScheme/MzScheme/MrEd/Web Server etc for research or advanced development and you don't want the project to die, could you please send a short one-page, signed letter of support to me c/o Eli Barzilay on some formal looking letter head please? The letter should state what you do, where you work, and that you have used PLT Scheme for research and advanced development. If you are so inclined, you can also add that it is critical and what you have done with it.

For addresses, see below. Thanks! -- Matthias

P.S. Electronic signatures are okay, too, indeed they are ideal.

Matthias Felleisen
c/o Eli Barzilay
Trustee Professor
College of Computer Science
Northeastern University
Boston, MA 02115

The deadline for letters of support is 1 July 2005.

Editors on Vacation

Or are they just being lazy? ;-)

A gentle reminder to y'all to post something...

Call to and for editors

As you can see being quite busy I have to reduce my contributions to LtU. I guess I am not alone in this regard as the frequency of new items mentioned on the home page shows.

I urge editors to post more often. Several items posted to the LtU forum were quite relevant for the home page, especially due to the low volume of new messages. Remember that if you feel an item in the forum is worthy of wider attention, you can post a link to it on the home page.

That concludes the message intended for current contributing editors.

If, howver, you are not an editor, yet visit LtU regularly and wish to become one, get in touch with me, and get added to our illustrious team.


Many recent threads in the discussion group refer to papers we discussed in the past. Some of these were discussed at great length.

I urge you to search the site when you want to refer to a paper that might have been discussed before, and to link to the original discussion of the paper, if there was one.

I urge the editors to post to the home page about important papers that first come up in the discussions currently going on.


New RSS Feed(s)

LtU now has a complete set of RSS feeds, covering front page stories, discussion forum topics, and comments:

The first two feeds above include only top-level stories and topics, and the comment feed includes only comments. If you want RSS for all story and forum content posted on the site, including comments, then you need all three feeds.

There are a couple of known limitations of these feeds right now, which should be corrected soon:

  • The comment feed does not specify which story/thread a comment belongs to.
  • The front page and forum feeds do not specify who posted a story or new forum topic.
We haven't yet added any menu links or icons for the new feeds. We're interested in getting some feedback on this three-feed approach: would it be preferable to have two feeds, one for both front page and forum items, without comments, and another which includes all content including comments? The current setup follows the line of least resistance in terms of implementation, but if there are any strong preferences we'll take that into account in the upcoming upgrade of Drupal.

Busy, busy, busy

I am extremely busy at the moment, and the papers I mange to read aren't about programming languages at the moment...

I hope the other contributors will continue to take up the slack, and I'll try to get back to posting more regularly soon.

2005 Bloggies

If you feel like nominating us, or voting for us - go ahead...

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