Wednesday, October 1, 2008
Richard Gabriel and Guy Steele will speak at Lisp50
Richard P. Gabriel, IBM Research
Richard P. Gabriel received a PhD in Computer Science from Stanford University in 1981, and an MFA in Poetry from Warren Wilson College in 1998. He has been a researcher at Stanford University, company president and Chief Technical Officer at Lucid, Inc., vice president of Development at ParcPlace-Digitalk, a management consultant for several startups, a Distinguished Engineer at Sun Microsystems, a Consulting Professor of Computer Science at Stanford University, and lead guitarist for a rock 'n' roll band. He is a Distinguished Engineer at IBM Research, looking into the architecture, design, and implementation of extraordinarily large, self-sustaining systems as well as development techniques for building them. Until recently he was President of the Hillside Group, a nonprofit that nurtures the software patterns community by holding conferences, publishing books, and awarding scholarships. He sits on Hillside's Board of Directors. He helped design and implement a variety of dialects of Lisp. He is author of four books (Performance and Evaluation of Lisp Systems, MIT Press; Patterns of Software: Tales from the Software Community, Oxford University Press; Writers' Workshops and the Work of Making Things, Addison-Wesley Press; and Innovation Happens Elsewhere: Open Source as Business Strategy, Morgan Kaufmann), and a poetry chapbook (Drive On, Hollyridge Press), with two books of poetry in preparation: Leaf of my Puzzled Desire and Drive On. Since March 2000 he has written a poem a day. He has published more than 150 scientific, technical, and semi-popular papers, articles, and essays on computing. He has won several awards, including the AAAI/ACM Allen Newell Award. He is a poet. He lives in California.
Guy L. Steele, Jr., Sun Microsystems
Guy L. Steele Jr. (Ph.D., MIT, 1980) is a Sun Fellow and heads the Programming Language Research Group within Sun Microsystems Laboratories in Burlington, MA, USA. Before coming to Sun in 1994, he held positions at Carnegie-Mellon University, Tartan Laboratories, and Thinking Machines Corporation. He is the author or co-author of several books on programming languages (Common Lisp, C, High Performance Fortran, the Java Language Specification) as well as The Hacker's Dictionary (also known on the Internet as the Jargon File).
He has served as program chair for four ACM conferences on programming languages and also on the program committees of over 30 other conferences. He has served on accredited standards committees for the programming languages Common Lisp, C, Fortran, Scheme, and ECMAScript. He is an inventor or co-inventor on over 40 computer-related patents. He designed the original EMACS command set and was the first person to port TeX.
He is a Fellow of the American Association for Artificial Intelligence (1990) and a Fellow of the Association for Computing Machinery (1994). He has been awarded the ACM Grace Murray Hopper Award (1988), a Gordon Bell Prize (1990), and the ACM SIGPLAN Programming Languages Achievement Award (1996). He has been elected to the National Academy of Engineering of the United States of America (2001) and to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences (2002).
The Evolution of Lisp
This play is a word-for-word recreation of the presentation of the paper, The Evolution of Lisp, at the ACM History of Programming Languages II Conference, which took place at the Cambridge Center Marriott Hotel, Salon III, at 8:30am on Thursday, April 22, 1993. The role of Guy L. Steele Jr, will be played by Guy L. Steele Jr., and Richard P. Gabriel will play Richard P. Gabriel. The following were the bios for them at that time:
Biography of Guy L. Steele, Jr.
Guy L. Steele Jr. received his A.B. in applied mathematics from Harvard College (1975), and his S. M.and Ph.D.in computer science and artificial intelligence from M.I.T. (1977 and 1980). He has been an assistant professor of computer science at Carnegie-Mellon University; a member of technical staff at Tartan Laboratories in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; and a senior scientist at Thinking Machines Corporation.
He is author or coauthor of three books: Common Lisp: The Language (Digital Press); C: A Reference Manual (Prentice-Hall); and The Hacker's Dictionary (Harper&Row), which has been revised as The New Hacker's Dictionary, edited by Eric Raymond with introduction and illustrations by Guy Steele (MIT Press).
He has published more than two dozen papers on the subject of the Lisp language and Lisp implementation, including a series with Gerald Jay Sussman that defined the Scheme dialect of Lisp. One of these, Multiprocessing Compactifying Garbage Collection, won first place in the ACM 1975 George E. Forsythe Student Paper Competition. Other papers published in are Design of a LISP-Based Microprocessor with Gerald Jay Sussman (November 1980) and Data Parallel Algorithms with W. Daniel Hillis (December 1986). He has also published papers on other subjects, including compilers, parallel processing, and constraint languages. One song he composed has been published in the Communications of the ACM (The Telnet Song, April 1984).
The Association for Computing Machinery awarded him the 1988 Grace Murray Hopper Award. He was elected a Fellow of the American Association for Artificial Intelligence in 1990. He led the team that received a 1990 Gordon Bell Prize honorable mention for achieving the fastest speed to that date for a production application: 14.182 Gigaflops.
He has served on accredited standards committees X3J11 (C language) and X3J3 (FORTRAN) and is currently chairman of X3J13 (Common Lisp). He was also a member of the IEEE committee that produced the IEEE Standard for the Scheme Programming Language, IEEE Std 1178-1990. He represents Thinking Machines Corporation in the High Performance FORTRAN Forum.
He has served on Ph.D. thesis committees for seven students. He has served as program chair for the 1984 ACM Conference on Lisp and Functional Programming and for the 15th ACM Symposium on Principles of Programming Languages (1988); he also served on program committees for 30 other conferences. He served a five-year term on the ACM Turing Award committee, chairing it in 1990. He served a five-year term on the ACM Grace Murray Hopper Award committee, chairing it in 1992.
He has had chess problems published in Chess Life and Review and is a Life Member of the United States Chess Federation. He has sung in the bass section of the MIT Choral Society (John Oliver, conductor) and the Masterworks Chorale (Allen Lannom, conductor) as well as in choruses with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra at Great Woods (Michael Tilson Thomas, conductor) and with the Boston Concert Opera (David Stockton, conductor). He has played the role of Lun Tha in The King and I and the title role in Li'lAbner. His "Crunchly" cartoons appear in The New Hacker's Dictionary. He designed the original EMACS command set and was the first person to port TeX.
Biography of Richard P. Gabriel
Richard P. Gabriel received his Ph.D. in Computer Science from Stanford University in 1981. He has been a researcher at Stanford University, a company president and Chief Technical Officer of Lucid, Inc., and a Consulting Professor of Computer Science at Stanford University. He helped design and implement a variety of dialects of Lisp. He is author of one book, Performance and Evaluation of Lisp Systems (MIT Press). He has published more than 100 scientific, technical, and semi-popular papers, articles, and essays on computing. He is the lead guitarist in a working rock 'n' roll band and a poet.
This was the abstract for the talk:
Lisp is the world's greatest programming language-or so its proponents think. The structure of Lisp makes it easy to extend the language or even to implement entirely new dialects without starting from scratch. Overall, the evolution of Lisp has been guided more by institutional rivalry, one-upsmanship, and the glee born of technical cleverness that is characteristic of the "hacker culture" than by sober assessments of technical requirements. Nevertheless this process has eventually produced both an industrial strength programming language, messy but powerful, and a technically pure dialect, small but powerful, that is suitable for use by programming-language theoreticians. We pick up where McCarthy's paper in the first HOPL conference left off. We trace the development chronologically from the era of the PDP-6, through the heyday of Interlisp and MacLisp, past the ascension and decline of special purpose Lisp machines, to the present era of standardization activities. We then examine the technical evolution of a few representative language features, including both some notable successes and some notable failures, that illuminate design issues that distinguish Lisp from other programming languages. We also discuss the use of Lisp as a laboratory for designing other programming languages. We conclude with some reflections on the forces that have driven the evolution of Lisp.