some filched quotes about Lisp; some other stuff about programming languages and DNA computation
SQL, Lisp, and Haskell are the only programming languages that I've seen where one spends more time thinking than typing.
-- Philip Greenspun, March 2007
I suppose I should learn Lisp, but it seems so foreign.
-- Paul Graham, November 1983
One can even conjecture that Lisp owes its survival specifically to the fact that its programs are lists, which everyone, including me, has regarded as a disadvantage.
— John McCarthy, Inventor of Lisp, "Early History of Lisp"
Any sufficiently complicated C or Fortran program contains an ad-hoc, informally-specified bug-ridden slow implementation of half of Common Lisp.
— Philip Greenspun, often called Greenspun's Tenth Rule of Programming
Please don't assume Lisp is only useful for Animation and Graphics, AI, Bioinformatics, B2B and E-Commerce, Data Mining, EDA/Semiconductor applications, Expert Systems, Finance, Intelligent Agents, Knowledge Management, Mechanical CAD, Modeling and Simulation, Natural Language, Optimization, Research, Risk Analysis, Scheduling, Telecom, and Web Authoring just because these are the only things they happened to list.
— Kent Pitman
Lisp has all the visual appeal of oatmeal with fingernail clippings mixed in.
— Larry Wall, creator of the Perl programming language
LISP being the most powerful and cleanest of languages, that's the language that the GNU project always prefers.
the greatest single programming language ever designed
-- Alan Kay
[Emacs] is written in Lisp, which is the only computer language that is beautiful.
— Neal Stephenson, In the Beginning ... was the Command Line
A LISP programmer knows the value of everything, but the cost of nothing.
— Alan Perlis, Epigrams on Programming
QuickBASIC does everything C++ can do, only backwards and in high heels.
— Bob Merkin (with apologies to Ginger Rogers)
Forth isn't just a programming language. Or a development environment. It's a cult. People encounter Forth and leave their families and sell the house and car because the moment they first understand what Forth is and how it works, Forth is the only important thing in the world for the rest of their lives. What other high-level language gets a big write-up in Rolling Stone?
There is something New in programming hardware and software. For the last ten years, it's been possible to compute numerical and mathematical problems, and get your answers with incredible speed unmatched anywhere in the solid-state electronic world, using synthetically sequenced DNA in a petrie dish. The first problem that got answered with DNA computing was a many-mode Travelling Salesman Problem (TSP). DNA, of course, has been computing incredibly big problems at incredibly fast speeds since nucleic acid-based life began; it's how it reproduces life nearly error-free. But nobody ever thought to use this astonishingly powerful computing potential on human-conscious tailor-made problems before.