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Clojure eyes, and I'll kiss you

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Mar. 18th, 2013 | 10:32 pm
location: the mountains
mood: cheerfulcheerful

Sorry about the title, folks. I couldn't help it.

Clojure is a programming language. I don't think I've mentioned it before in my Journal. It's in the LISP family of languages; in particular, in some ways it's pretty similar to Scheme, and I've mentioned that a number of times.

I'm discovering that I like Clojure a lot. I resisted this conclusion
for a goodly while, because I didn't find Clojure as conceptually
elegant as Scheme. I still don't, but darn it, I've gotten to where I
can't deny that, for a wide range of types of projects, Clojure is
just more practical: you can get a working program faster with Clojure
than with Scheme.

You might well ask: "than with" which Scheme? Ah, yes.
Scheme, in practice, isn't one language, it's a sizeable family of
languages all by itself. They pretty much share a common core, but
differ widely as to features available beyond that. So it doesn't
really make sense to talk about how easy it is, or isn't, to get
something done in Scheme, without specifying which Scheme
implementation you're talking about.

Fair enough. Actually, I was comparing Clojure to SISC. That's a Scheme implementation for the JVM (Java Virtual Machine). It follows the Scheme standard (the one called "R5RS") for the core of the language, but many of its add-on features are JVM-specific.

And at this point in my history, SISC is the Scheme I've used the
most, by a wide margin.

It's a fair comparison ... or at least a relevant one ...
because in the case of Clojure, the whole language was designed for
the JVM.

I'm not going to try to prove to you that Clojure is a better language
than Scheme. Heck, I don't even think that it's "better." I
just think that it's more practical for getting certain kinds of
things done.

What kinds of things? Well, my current project ... which is
considerably the biggest project I've ever undertaken in Clojure ...
is (would you believe) income tax software.

More on that later ....

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