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comments on and questions about SRFI 93

This page is part of the web mail archives of SRFI 93 from before July 7th, 2015. The new archives for SRFI 93 contain all messages, not just those from before July 7th, 2015.

[Resending.  First attempt never got through.]

Thanks to everyone for their hard work on SRFI 93 and on the R6RS
process.  It's great to see how much care is being put into improving

I have a few comments and questions:

* The abstract says that the design "...also supports source-object
correlation, i.e., the maintenance of ties between the original source
code and expanded output, allowing implementations to provide
source-level support for debuggers and other tools."  However, I
didn't see anything later in the document that describes this.  Did
you mean only that the representation of syntax objects is up to the
implementation, and that the implementation can therefore maintain
additional information like source-object correlation?"  If so, the
SRFI document should mention that somewhere.  It would be great if,
perhaps in a later SRFI, a standard could be created for accessing and
manipulating this information.

* In this paragraph in section 3.1, "references" should be

  Expansion of each variable definition right-hand side is deferred
  until after all of the definitions have been seen so that each
  keyword and variable references within the right-hand side resolves
  to the local binding, if any.

* Also in section 3.1, this expression:

  (lambda (x)
    (define-syntax defun
      (syntax-rules () [(_ (x . a) e) (define x (lambda a e))]))
    (defun (even? n) (or (= n 0) (odd? (- n 1))))
    (define-syntax odd? (syntax-rules () [(_ n) (not (even? n))]))
    (odd? (if (odd? x) (* x x) x)))

is said to expand to this:

  (lambda (x)
    (letrec* ([even? (lambda (n)
                       (or (= n 0) (not (even? (- n 1)))))])
      (even? x)))

What happened to the squaring operation?  Shouldn't the expansion be

  (lambda (x)
    (letrec* ([even? (lambda (n)
                       (or (= n 0) (not (even? (- n 1)))))])
      (not (even? (if (not (even? x)) (* x x) x)))))

* Near the end of section 3.5, the third bulleted item is:

  a nonlist, novector, nonsymbol value, or

"Novector" should be "nonvector."

* In section 3.6, the paragraph describing ellipses says, "otherwise,
the expander would not be able to determine how many times the subform
should be repeated in the output."  I've never understood precisely
how Scheme macro systems decide how many expansions to do for a
particular use of ellipses in the output template.  I can usually
intuit what will happen, but I've never had a concrete understanding
of the algorithm.  Would it be possible to expand on the algorithm
here to make it absolutely clear?

For example, in the definition of `case' that follows in that section,
how are the ellipses that I've marked "question" below expanded?  Both
`k' and `e2' are followed by ellipses in the pattern, and both appear
in the template expression there.  How do we know to expand the
template expression once per that particular part of the pattern?

  (define-syntax case
    (lambda (x)
      (syntax-case x (else)
        [(_ e0 [(k ...) e1 e2 ...] ... [else else-e1 else-e2 ...])
         #'(let ([t e0])
               [(memv t '(k ...)) e1 e2 ...]
               ...             ;; question
               [else else-e1 else-e2 ...]))]
        [(_ e0 [(ka ...) e1a e2a ...] [(kb ...) e1b e2b ...] ...)
         #'(let ([t e0])
               [(memv t '(ka ...)) e1a e2a ...]
               [(memv t '(kb ...)) e1b e2b ...]

I apologize if I'm missing something obvious.  I would love to see
this expanded in the design document, even a little.

* In section 3.10, a definition is given for `identifier-syntax', but
the first clause appears to be missing a call to
`make-variable-transformer', which I've added here:

  (define-syntax identifier-syntax
    (syntax-rules (set!)
      [(_ e)
       (make-variable-transformer  ;; Should this be added?
         (lambda (x)
           (syntax-case x ()
             [id (identifier? #'id) #'e]
             [(_ x (... ...)) #'(e x (... ...))])))]
      [(_ (id exp1) ((set! var val) exp2))
       (and (identifier? #'id) (identifier? #'var))
         (lambda (x)
           (syntax-case x (set!)
             [(set! var val) #'exp2]
             [(id x (... ...)) #'(exp1 x (... ...))]
             [id (identifier? #'id) #'exp1])))]))

* I like the name changes described in section 5.2.

Thanks again for all the hard work.  I'm eager to see R6RS!