[cap-talk] Potting the web-calculus - peace?
john.carlson3 at sbcglobal.net
Sat Dec 31 14:11:03 EST 2005
>Right, and what is a pointer?
A pointer is a reference to a location or container. There are 4 basic
things in computer science, name, type, value,
and location. A pointer is a value that refers to a location.
>Pointers can be most thoroughly understood by considering how they work in
>simple computational models, like the lambda calculus with local state, and
>then extending that understanding to take account of how pointers differ in
>various languages. After all, Lisp was the first programming language to
>support pointers, and Lisp is *directly* derived from the lambda calculus.
I prefer models based on the real world, like postal addresses. A
postal address is a reference to a location (pointer) somewhere
on the world, and predates lambda calculus. Also, phone numbers predate
lambda calculus. Maybe if someone could explain how
lambda calculus is related to GUIs or 3D modelling, I would get it.
>I think much of the problem with the current state of computing is that most
>people have no appreciation for history. That, and blatent unreasoning
>predjudice against anything that is perceived as too "academic" -- as if
>"academia" was some kind of dirty word, rather than the source of almost
>all useful and lasting ideas in computer system design.
Well, I unfortunately was never introduced to lambda calculus in college
(I'm not sure why!). I have tried reading
about it, but since I got schizophrenia, it's rather hard to read PDFs
and printed PDFs. I think it may be that I get
my best understanding from the spoken word as opposed to the printed
word, and I have never heard someone explain
lambda calculus. Anyone have a video explaining it?
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