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When Arc was released a few days ago, a commonly-read verdict was that it's mostly an accumulation of seemingly trivial (or even cosmetic) changes from Common Lisp or Scheme; often for the worse.
Small changes in the microstructure of a language can result in surprisingly large changes in the macrostructure of programs (and hence, libraries). Few communities are willing to rewrite (and, more importantly, rethink) their core applications and libraries when new constructs are introduced (K and Factor [Language] being two exceptional cases I'm somewhat familiar with), the whole process being a. akin to repeatedly tearing down and rebuilding a palace (or even a city) and b. accordingly painful. That's, however, what's necessary to take maximum advantage of such changes, to eventually arrive at, as earl writes, a "set of core language constructs [that] is radically fine-tuned to fit together."
Paul Graham's audacity to even try in the context of a cult that evolved clinging to the past to culture deserves some applause.
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