Lisp Machine


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Lisp Machine

(architecture)
Any machine (whether notional or actual) whose instruction set is Lisp.

Lisp Machine

(hardware, operating system)
A line of workstations made by Symbolics, Inc. from the mid-1970s (having grown out of the MIT AI Lab) to late 1980s. All system code for Symbolics Lisp Machines was written in Lisp Machine Lisp. Symbolics Lisp Machines were also notable for having had space-cadet keyboards.

Lisp Machine Museum.
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LISP machine

A high-end workstation used to execute applications written in the LISP programming language. Typically with keyboards customized for LISP commands, machines from Symbolics, Lisp Machines Inc., TI and Xerox were introduced in the 1980s. See LISP.


A Dedicated LISP Machine
Running the Geneva OS, this Symbolics 3640 LISP machine, which debuted in 1983, was on display in 2001 at the Vintage Computer Festival East in Marlborough, Mass. (Image courtesy of Michael L. Umbricht and Carl R. Friend, Retro-Computing Society of RI, Inc., www.creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/legalcode)
Copyright © 1981-2019 by The Computer Language Company Inc. All Rights reserved. THIS DEFINITION IS FOR PERSONAL USE ONLY. All other reproduction is strictly prohibited without permission from the publisher.
References in periodicals archive ?
THEOREM 3.1 Every on-line symbolic impure Lisp machine M can be simulated by a pure Lisp machine M' in such a way that all outputs produced by M within the first n steps are produced by M[prime]within the first O(n log n) steps.
Hardware includes dedicated symbolic processors (Lisp machines) and general-purpose workstations that use AI software and work in AI environments.
It has generally been true that conventional computers (as opposed to Lisp machines) execute programs written in conventional languages much faster than Lisp programs.
Pike's published work was evidently important and influential, while the Lisp Machine developers' work was either unpublished and thereby withheld from the scholarly community, or as obvious and unimportant as Stallman and Garfinkle claim.
In that capacity, he played a significant role in the development of the Lisp Machine's GENERA programming environment, still regarded as the most powerful software development environment in existence.
Lisp systems on Lisp machines support large address space applications very efficiently.
The resulting code runs quite fast, but is much less compact than its Lisp machine counterpart.
This scenario immediately excludes machines with nonstandard architectures--like traditional dedicated Lisp machines and machines with conventional architectures that are still regarded as research (mainly Unix) workstations.
For example, such an environment migh have VAXes and SUNs running UNIX, one or two Symbolics LISP machines, and a number of prototypes of special purpose architectures.
Unfortunately, ART was only available on special purpose Lisp machines which limited its applicability in commercial markets where VAX were more acceptable.
There was lots of excitement about Lisp machines, which benefited from a tight integration of components and powerful features.
While development of Prolog machines has been slow, there are a number of computers and personal workstations to run Lisp, including machines from Digital Equipment Corp., Fujitsu, Lisp Machines, Incorporated, Symbolics, Incorporated, and Xerox Corporation, Apollo Computer, Incorporated recently extended its programming language base with Domain Lisp, allowing AI applications to run on its workstations.