[plt-scheme] Scheme Steering Committee Position Statement

From: Stephen Bloch (sbloch at adelphi.edu)
Date: Mon Aug 24 14:31:28 EDT 2009

One of the great things about having a macro system is that you can  
write extensions with different syntax.  In at least PLT, you can  
even redefine the reader to parse, say, C syntax rather than Scheme s- 
expressions.  So why not just put all the "large language" stuff into  
optional libraries?  The "core" language would need to standardize  
the basic stuff that all reasonable Schemes agree on anyway, plus  
enough about modules and macros to write and invoke those libraries  
in a portable way.  Presumably the most popular of these optional  
libraries would come to be bundled with all the common  
implementations, so they would be a de facto standardized programming  

We would still have to negotiate a common ground among the various  
module system, and among the various macro systems, but that seems  
more manageable than trying to standardize everything that any  
professional programmer anywhere might want in the language.  And  
conceptually simpler than having a "small" language standard and a  
"big" language standard.

But I'm not a Scheme-language mucky-muck; this approach is so obvious  
that the committee must have thought of it and rejected it for some  

Stephen Bloch
sbloch at adelphi.edu

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