Wisp Screencasts

I've been chugging away on Wisp, announced in my last post, every day since I started it a few weeks ago, and it's becoming a pretty solid system. There's now an exception system, reference counting for dealing with garbage, and a reentrant parser. It's no replacement for any other lisps, but I've found it to be very fun to work on.

git clone git://github.com/skeeto/wisp.git

I wanted to show off some of the new features of Wisp, and since I was inspired by Full Disclojure, since it's so damn slick, I decided to make some screencasts of Wisp in action. All of the screencast software for GNU/Linux is pretty poor, but after a few hours of head-banging I managed to hobble something together for you. Enjoy!

That video demonstrated the memoization function. It can be pulled in from the memoize library. You give it a symbol, which should have a function definition stored in it, and it will installed a wrapper around it. In the video I used the Fibonacci function from the examples library.

(require 'examples)
(fib 30) ; Slooooow ...
(memoize 'fib)
(fib 100) ; Fast!

This demonstrated the "detachment" feature of Wisp, which is similar to "futures" in Clojure. It forks off a new process, which executes the given function. The send function can be used in the detached process to send any lisp objects back to the parents, which can receive them with the receive function. The send function can be called any number of times to continually send data back. The receive function will block if there is no lisp object to receive yet.

(require 'examples)
(setq d (detach (lambda () (send (fib)))))
(receive d) ; Gets value from child process

This video shows off the point-free functions that have been defined: function composition and partial application (I accidentally say "partial evaluation" in the video). These are actually just simple macros that any lisp could do.

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Chris Wellons

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