Tristan Alexander McLeay's Road to Lisp
I, Tristan Alexander McLeay, do solemnly offer these my responses to The Road to Lisp Survey:

When did you first try Lisp seriously, and which Lisp family member was it?

Switch Date 2003
This year. In the last few weeks. Common Lisp, Emacs (Lisp), REP (Sawfish's, a *nix window manager, Lisp) and Scheme. All at once. But mostly Common Lisp.

What led you to try Lisp?
incorporating Where did your road originate?

I think a bit of a lot of things. I'd bumped into it somewhen, and looked at it briefly but couldn't be bothered doing anything, and then I read the Unix Hater's Handbook and got more interested and sat around doing nothing, and then I started using Sawfish as my window manager, and then my interest was tipped over the limit and I couldn't help it.

I'd bumped into other languages, like Java and Visual Basic and Python and PHP and they were okay (except VB), and then for one of the reasons listed above, I read a bit about Lisp and realised that Java and Python and PHP weren't okay.

So I read a bit about non-imperative languages in general, and about Haskell specifically, and started mucking around with it but never really did anything with it. I did like it (and Python)'s indentation-syntax, but given that Lisp is almost unreadable without it, Lisp is close enough (and I like brackets anyway (I use an awful lot of them)) :) Anyway, I became annoyed at my window manager—XFwm4—and gave Sawfish a shot. Discovering how Lisp-based it was made me bother to getting around to bothering with learning more of it.

How far have you gotten in your study of Lisp?

I am at the beginnings, but it's already screwed up my ability to think. I have a C assignment for Uni, and I can't think properly, so I'm writing a first-shot in Lisp and then I'll convert it into C. But that'd be the first thing I've ever written in Lisp, Common or otherwise (though I have hacked around with a few Sawfish themes).

What do you think of Lisp so far?

It's good. I've hardly learnt any of the advanced things in it though, so rather than being a powerful tool, it's a tool with a more natural way of expressing things. It'd be better if there were GTK+ 2.2 bindings for it that worked :)

And esoterica and hold-overs from past eras like car and cdr are always fun :)

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