It has been awhile

May 8, 2007

I have been swamped with writing code for an OCR/Scanning system for my employer and being a team leader for 14 people (10 developers). Haven’t had too much time to continue Lisp development.

Recently, I had to do quarterly reviews and gave as an objective that each developer should learn a new language over the course of the next year.Each person was to choose a language they did not know and that would, hopefully, be mind expanding for them.

Most of the people on my team will be learning Python. One developer chose Erlang, though. Three others, including me, chose Haskell. No one chose Lisp or Scheme. Sad. The reasoning for Erlang and Haskell had to mainly do with wanting to learn a functional programming language that promised to be able to take advantage of the coming concurrency revolution through multiple cores.

Lisp was viewed as too old and having horrible syntax. I personally find it elegant and still far ahead of it’s time– although, I am afraid that the “ahead of it’s time” mantra is causing a lot of the community to rest on their laurels instead of pushing into the future.

I will be releasing some updates for trivial-freeimage in the upcoming weeks as well as a wrapper for the ocr engine TOCR. This little engine has outstanding character accuracy and is cheap– 40$ for the standard version and 86$ for the Euro version.

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5 Responses to “It has been awhile”

  1. user Says:

    Sadly TOCR runs on windows only.

  2. Bryan Says:

    True. In my day job we have tested a lot of OCR engines and, unfortunately, there are no really good ones for Linux– at least for what we do. We would love to have one for Linux– in fact we are about to start a project to create an OCR engine for our specific problem domain. It seems all of the companies doing ocr are targetting Windows.

  3. Sean Says:

    “No one chose Lisp or Scheme.”

    It’s likely a lot of folks might have already had a good deal of exposure to it at uni. Interesting that I learned lisp in a similar, albeit independent of uni\work, “mind expanding exercise” and found it really rewarding.

  4. Dimiter "malkia" Stanev Says:

    I agree with Sean.

    Lots of colleagues are just of afraid of it, being exposed it in college/uni. Some horror stories. I’ve started learning lisp last year, bought LispWorks, and I’m happily hacking some little apps. One problem so far I see, is that the more I learn, the more I see that more is to be learned. I’m afraid I can’t open my eyes more than that. I used to play more pc/video games, now I have fun playing with Lisp. (Common Lisp, and just a little mit/plt Scheme).

  5. Bryan Says:

    Actually, all the developers choosing haskell had scheme in college. All of the others had not.


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