Numbers In Sector Lisp

Digits are just arbitrary scribbles.

For example, we could define 10 atoms in Sector Lisp with suggestive names, e.g.

  • (quote 0)
  • (quote 1)
  • (quote 2)
  • (quote 3)
  • (quote 4)
  • (quote 5)
  • (quote 6)
  • (quote 7)
  • (quote 8)
  • (quote 9)

In Sector Lisp, these 10 atoms would be Atoms and would never be garbage collected.

What if you had a batch editor that replaced every occurrence of the character ‘4’ with the string of characters (quote 4)?

Even Microsoft Word® can do this. The operation is called Search and Replace.

The names could be any unicode character, or, any string of characters. For example, we could define an Atom (quote IV) to mean the same thing as 4. In ASCII, IV needs 2 bytes, whereas 4 needs only one byte.

In Sector Lisp, each of these Atoms would be represented by an Address. (In Sector Lisp, an Address is 1-byte long)1.

Batch Editor (AKA Macro Processor)

One line of bash script can do the batch edit:

$prep '.' '$' batch-edit-4.ohm batch-edit-4.glue --stop=1 < test.txt

See run.bash and test.txt and the grammar batch-edit-4.ohm and the reformatting script batch-edit-4.glue.

(The command-line args to prep are mostly details that you can decipher later).




I’ve included a sub-directory containing the tool I call prep (rhymes with grep, and looks like preprocessor).

It uses Ohm-JS.

It’s kinda-like sed but uses grammars instead of REGEXs.

Prep needs two specifications:

  1. a pattern-matching spec
  2. a reformatting spec.

Reformatting is currently done using an experimental syntax that I call glue.

Prep is described in YouTube.

Prep is further described.

Glue is described by following the links in ABC Glue.

Actually, prep uses REGEX to find chunks of text, then uses grammars+glue to reformat the chunks.

Sector Lisp

Sector Lisp


This example is chosen for its simplicity.

This specific batch-edit could be done with sed or with a language that incorporates REGEX, like JavaScript.

The interesting stuff comes when you need to match nested (structured) text. That’s when REGEX gets hard and you need to switch to a parser.

See Also

Table of Contents

  1. If you had more than 256 of these Atoms, you might want more than one Sector Lisp program, or, you might want to invent a new kind of Sector Lisp based on Unicode instead of being based on 8-bit bytes.