[Ecls-list] ECL and UIs

Mark Cox markcox80 at gmail.com
Wed May 1 06:07:05 UTC 2013

Hi Jason,

On 01/05/2013, at 4:42 AM, Jason Sewall wrote:

> I have a C library I have been working on and I'd like to use (Common)
> Lisp to write a UI to go on top of it.
> I first seized upon ECL for the Lisp, since I could easily make an
> interface to the library, and I had a notion at CommonQt might be a
> good way to do the UI. Of course, I can put lots of UI material into
> the C lib and export that to Lisp myself, but I'd really prefer to
> leverage something that already exists.
> Leaving the details of the individual hurdles I've come across aside,
> I haven't gotten anywhere. It seems like every GUI toolkit for Lisp I
> come across is poorly maintained and/or doesn't work with ECL.

I have used EQL and CommonQt with ECL/SBCL and I have managed to be productive. I wasn't at first, not because of the libraries, but because of the GUI programming paradigm.

Since both projects work then obviously they are poorly maintained. I haven't had a need to communicate with the developers of CommonQt, but I always found Polos Ruetz from EQL responsive and enthusiastic. I know he has changed jobs which has placed constraints on his free time for EQL.

I have CommonQt working on OSX, FreeBSD (9.1) and Linux (debian squeeze) with ECL. I will help you debug your problems. Email me privately the details of the problem you are encountering.

> I know my way around pure Common Lisp, but I don't have much
> experience with libraries for it.
> What would you folks do? Does anyone do this? It seems like building
> the UI in lisp would be much more flexible and fun than doing it in C!
> Cheers,
> Jason
> P.S. I posted this to /r/lisp in Reddit earlier, but figured this
> might be a better place to ask.
> P.P.S. I have seen EQL, and it is quite nice, but I am concerned about
> it's long-term viability

Nothing lasts for ever and there is always something new.

> , partially because of its limited development
> support and partially because of its heavily vertically integrated
> architecture.

I am not sure what a vertically integrated architecture is, but the limited development support can only be improved with funding or your own personal time. Ironically, both of these things are subject to long term viability.


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