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see programming languageprogramming language,
syntax, grammar, and symbols or words used to give instructions to a computer. Development of Low-Level Languages

All computers operate by following machine language programs, a long sequence of instructions called machine code that is
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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



(parasigmatism), the imperfect pronunciation of sibilants (z, s, ts, 3, t ʃ, ʃ, ʃ t ʃ). It may be due to defective arrangement of the teeth (such as the presence of a gap between the front teeth), inadequate mobility of the tongue, partial deafness, or other cause. It sometimes occurs when the structure of the vocal apparatus is normal as a manifestation of underdeveloped speech. The afflicted person usually places the tip of the tongue between the front teeth when articulating sibilants, which results in the characteristic lisping sound. Logopedic methods are used to correct the defect. Surgery or the use of a prosthesis is sometimes indicated when there are structural anomalies of the vocal apparatus.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


(computer science)
An interpretive language developed for the manipulation of symbolic strings of recursive data; can also be used to manipulate mathematical and arithmetic logic. Derived from list processing language.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.


LISt Processing language.

(Or mythically "Lots of Irritating Superfluous Parentheses"). Artificial Intelligence's mother tongue, a symbolic, functional, recursive language based on the ideas of lambda-calculus, variable-length lists and trees as fundamental data types and the interpretation of code as data and vice-versa.

Data objects in Lisp are lists and atoms. Lists may contain lists and atoms. Atoms are either numbers or symbols. Programs in Lisp are themselves lists of symbols which can be treated as data. Most implementations of Lisp allow functions with side-effects but there is a core of Lisp which is purely functional.

All Lisp functions and programs are expressions that return values; this, together with the high memory use of Lisp, gave rise to Alan Perlis's famous quip (itself a take on an Oscar Wilde quote) that "Lisp programmers know the value of everything and the cost of nothing".

The original version was LISP 1, invented by John McCarthy <> at MIT in the late 1950s. Lisp is actually older than any other high level language still in use except Fortran. Accordingly, it has undergone considerable change over the years. Modern variants are quite different in detail. The dominant HLL among hackers until the early 1980s, Lisp now shares the throne with C. See languages of choice.

One significant application for Lisp has been as a proof by example that most newer languages, such as COBOL and Ada, are full of unnecessary crocks. When the Right Thing has already been done once, there is no justification for bogosity in newer languages.

See also Association of Lisp Users, Common Lisp, Franz Lisp, MacLisp, Portable Standard Lisp, Interlisp, Scheme, ELisp, Kamin's interpreters.
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(1) (Locator/Identifier Separation Protocol) A network architecture from Cisco for reducing the size of the constantly expanding routing tables in the Internet. Working in conjunction with the border gateway protocol (BGP), LISP-identified packets enter the core routers with the destination service provider's IP address. The provider's edge routers remove the LISP data and deliver the packets to the end users.

(2) (LISt Processing) A high-level programming language used for developing artificial intelligence (AI) applications. Developed in the late 1950s by John McCarthy, its syntax and structure is very different from traditional programming languages. For example, there is no syntactic difference between data and instructions, which allows the language to be extended in unusual ways by innovative programmers.

LISP is available in both interpreter and compiler versions and can be modified and expanded by the programmer. Many varieties have been developed, including versions that perform calculations efficiently. The following example from the popular Common LISP dialect converts Fahrenheit to Celsius. See LISP machine.

   (defun convert ()
     (format t "Enter Fahrenheit ")
     (let ((fahr (read)))
      (format t "Celsius is <126>D"
        (truncate (*(-fahr 32)
            (/ 5 9))))))
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