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[REBOL] Re: What does REBOL fix?

From: gedb01::yahoo at: 16-Dec-2003 16:59

Hi Joel, --- Joel Neely <[joel--neely--fedex--com]> wrote: >
> I disclaim all knowledge re PHP, but here's a > trivial Perl client > to fetch and execute/evaluate source from a remote > host. > > use LWP::Simple; > eval get ("http://your-site-here"); > > I guess one has to decide whether a one-line summary > for REBOL (or any other language) is to be: >
Looking at it again, the challange was "to describe [the language] in terms of the problem it fixes." [1] This is very different from a marketing slogan. For example, the one-liner for lisp is Lisp: Turing Machines are an awkward way to describe computation. This seems an awkward way to describe Lisp, but it probably does reflect the motivation of John McCarthy back in the 1960s. Rebol's creator has expressed the problem that Rebol is intended to fix quite clearly on the Rebol web site: REBOL is not a traditional computer language like C, BASIC, or Java. Instead, REBOL was designed to solve one of the fundamental problems in computing: the exchange and interpretation of information between distributed computer systems. The ultimate goal of REBOL is to provide a new architecture for how information is stored, exchanged, and processed between all devices connected over the Internet. Unlike other approaches that require tens of megabytes of code, layers upon layers of complexity that run on only a single platform, and specialized programming tools, REBOL is small, portable, and easy to manage. The difference is clear when you look at the example given. The code required to pass a string to another machine and have it execute is simple enough, but it isn't enough for the real world. The code as given presents a massive security risk. So you have to construct sandboxes and all the rest of it. Layers upon layers of complexity. For Rebol the only change you would make to reach production level code is to create a dialect to express the necessary functionality. This does not mean that Rebol is better than these languages. These other languages have 'eval' as a nice feature. On the other hand, the ability to send an expression for another machine to execute is central to Rebol's purpose. I think I may be taking this all too seriously. [1] http://www.paulgraham.com/fix.html [2] http://www.rebol.com/rebol-intro.html ________________________________________________________________________ BT Yahoo! Broadband - Save 80 when you order online today. Hurry! Offer ends 21st December 2003. The way the internet was meant to be. http://uk.rd.yahoo.com/evt=21064/*http://btyahoo.yahoo.co.uk