Readable S-Expressions

Why do people keep doing this? They should stop. Now. Really.

There is nothing wrong with parentheses. Lispers like them and deal with them without difficulty.

There is nothing wrong with Lisp syntax. Lispers like it and deal with it without difficulty.

There is nothing awkward about S-expressions. They are not hard to read and, really, those who find the prefix notation confusing or fail to understand its advantages should find another way to earn a living.

If you think Lisp should to be like Python, just use Python. The Lispers and Pythonistas will both be thank you.

If you're going to quote Paul Graham, don't use his words to make a point that he certainly wouldn't agree with.


Reading this over, it may seem a little harsh. Certainly Wheeler is entitled to work on any project he likes and to scratch anything that itches but I don't see the point of this project. It tries—unsuccessfully, I think—to fix things that Lispers don't see as broken and produces a syntax that starts with the clean and elegant Python and makes it ugly. Actually, I think Pythonistas should be more offended than Lispers at the result.

To paraphrase DMR, if you want Python, you know where to find it.

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  • Sam

    It is funny when I read that people hate Lisp's parentheses. I personally fell in love with LISP because of the parentheses. I find sexp _very_ expressive.