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> From: Michael Sperber <sperber@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> > Tom> Either way, these "constants" wind up having exactly the > Tom> same style of interface as SCHEME_ENTER_* rather than a > Tom> special case interface that refers to their traditional > Tom> implementation using immediate representations. > OK, point taken. But why is that a reason to have SCHEME_FALSE() > instead of SCHEME_FALSE? (Alternatively: why does Scheme allow EQ? to > work on booleans, and use #f instead of (false)?) I'm not arguing for SCHEME_FALSE(), I'm arguing for either: SCHEME_FALSE (my_call_record) /* * JNI/minor style: returns a handle not a scheme_value */ or SCHEME_FALSE (&var_to_set_to_false[, my_instance]) /* * Pika style: stores #f in an output parameter. * (whether or not an instance parameter is * required here is a separate issue). */ because something like those styles of interfaces are required for GC-safety. If it were just SCHEME_FALSE() then obviously there would be just: #define SCHEME_POUND_F (SCHEME_FALSE ()) As for "why does scheme use #f instead of (false)": because Scheme programs don't have to explicitly protect intermediate results of expressions from garbage collection so there are no parameters needed. Implementations are required to protect intermediates implicitly. It's quite reasonable to regard all constants in Scheme as a special syntax for applications of nullary procedures -- you could very well regard #f just as shorthand for (false). As for "why does scheme require EQ? to compare booleans as EQV? does": Personally, I think EQ? is a historical wart on the language. But more fairly, clearly the intention is to carve out an approximation of EQV? which nearly all conceivable maximum-performance-concerned implementations can optimize down to a bitwise comparison of two 1-word values. Meanwhile, implementations with other priorities (e.g., small implementation size; simple implementation using C++ objects; etc) are free to implement EQ? as EQV?. If they do so, they aren't paying any penalty that they care about. The FFI should accomodate both kinds of implementation, though -- so it should not assume that EQ? is distinct from EQV? or that EQ? is the same as C's ==. -t