/[lispfaq]/lispfaq/continuations.xml
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Contents of /lispfaq/continuations.xml

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Revision 1.2 - (show annotations)
Mon Mar 22 20:07:41 2004 UTC (10 years ago) by emarsden
Branch: MAIN
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Changes since 1.1: +24 -24 lines
File MIME type: text/xml
  - minor formatting changes
1 <qandaentry>
2 <question>
3 <para>Why doesn't Common Lisp have continuations?</para>
4 </question>
5 <answer>
6 <para>
7 Continuations are a great theoretical tool; if a language has
8 first-class, multiply invocable continuations then one can build
9 threads, exceptions, coroutines, and the kitchen sink on top.
10 </para>
11 <para>
12 However, there is an implementation burden with continuations;
13 supporting first-class, multiply invocable continuations
14 complicates things tremendously for the Lisp implementor. The
15 ANSI standardizing committee J13, mindful of this, took the view
16 that it would be better to specify the user-level control
17 structure (CATCH, UNWIND-PROTECT, and so on) and let
18 implementors choose whether to build those on top of
19 continuations or not.
20 </para>
21 <para>
22 If you need to play with continuations, you should use a Scheme
23 implementation.
24 </para>
25 </answer>
26 </qandaentry>

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