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Re: What is a lightweight language

Matthias Felleisen <matthias@ccs.neu.edu> writes:

> Well, you're not the only one who has toyed with the idea that 
>  "call-with-current-continuation to be [not] essential to scheme." 
> as you just wrote. Even I, whom Phil Wadler used to introduce as "king of
> continuations", have doubted their value for a short time and suggested to
> Matthew that he consider throwing them out of Scheme. 
> I must say that I have only toyed with the idea and that the back button in
> Web browsers, Christian's lucid writing, and our own recent labor in this
> area, have totally convinced me that callcc-continuations are necessary and
> important for Scheme. 

Don't get me wrong:  I don't doubt the value of continuations, only
their utility.  My experience has been that in `normal' programming
tasks (such as the ones I would undertake in a `lightweight' language)
I have very little use for full-power first-class continuations.  A
decent error handler and non-local exit mechanism (either implemented
using first-class continuations or via some ad-hoc method) are
adequate for most purposes.