A widely-available graphics and interaction architecture.
Common Lisp already has a GUI standard in the shape of CLIM. Some of the vendors provide CLIM implementations originally based on a common shared (but not free) source, but seem not to really encourage its use. There is also a free mostly-complete implementation known as McCLIM
Somebody contributed this list of perceived problems with CLIM
- It is not that easy to use. You need quite a bit of knowledge about Lisp programming.
- It is a bit old by now. A lot of things have happened in the GUI/graphics world in between.
- It is based on the Symbolics' 'Dynamic Windows'. This GUI is cool but not very common. A speciality is the interaction with 'Presentations' and the possible integration of a special kind of Command Line. Not many endusers are familiar with such a GUI.
- The reference implementation is not free. Though some Lisp vendors offer their version of the source.
- The vendors don't share patches to the reference implementation anymore.
- The quality of the reference implementation and its various backends (Motif, Mac, Windows, Lispm, ...) was never completely satisfying.
- It lacks documentation about its inner workings. The missing document.
- The support for common GUI/Graphics features (Fonts, ...) and platform specific widgets is not that strong.
- It is very Lisp specific with a small user community.
The same guy contributed this list of perceived advantages of CLIM
- Platform independent.
- Supports several interaction styles.
- Captures a lot of the usual User Interface Management System (UIMS) abstractions.
- Powerful graphics model.
- Object-oriented with lots of reuse.
- Simple user interfaces are quick and easy to implement.
- Powerful command line interaction model.
- Presentation types are a nice building block for very interactive user interfaces via context sensitive input.
- Reference implementation is written mostly in portable Common Lisp plus some backend magic.
- Supports formatted output for lists, tables, graphs, ...
- Supports native gadgets.
- Some adaption to the platforms look and feel.
- Output recording captures graphics output.
- Incremental redisplay to minimize (re-)drawing.
- Layout descriptions.
- Several backends have been written over time (Lisp Machine, X11/Motif, CAPI, Windows, MacOS, Postscript and a partial backend to web pages).
The CLIM 2.0 Specification, hosted by Mike MacDonald. Also try Google for alternate sites describing vendor versions.
- Ask your vendor, or
- McCLIM, a mostly-feature-complete Free implementation.