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3 points by akkartik 86 days ago | link | parent

Check out John Shutt's thesis on Kernel: https://web.cs.wpi.edu/~jshutt/kernel.html. He takes your observation that quasiquotation is pointless to the limit, dropping it entirely and constructing his macros out of cons and friends.


2 points by waterhouse 72 days ago | link

Thanks for the pointer. He has an entire chapter on hygiene... And then there is this:

"There is no need to provide quotation here because, having failed to enforce the prohibition against embedding combiners in a macro expansion, we don’t need to embed their unevaluated names in the expansion."

It's nice that his primitive $vau grabs the current lexenv, as this enables another kind of macro-like behavior I've thought might be useful: taking subexpressions, fully macroexpanding them, and doing something with the result (e.g. determining whether a variable is ever used, and omitting a computation if not). I don't know how that would mesh with the interpreter's semantics, though...

I'll probably have to read and brood on this further.

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