By Cooper D.J.
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Another difference between symbols and strings is that CL provides a number of operations for manipulating strings that do not work for symbols: CL-USER(25): (setq c "Jane dates only Lisp programmers") "Jane dates only Lisp programmers" CL-USER(26): (char c 3) #\e CL-USER(27): (char ’xyz 1) Error: ‘XYZ’ is not of the expected type ‘STRING’ CL-USER(29): (subseq c 0 4) "jane" CL-USER(30): (subseq c (position #\space c)) " dates only lisp programmers" CL-USER(31): (subseq c 11 (length c)) "only lisp programmers" 52 CHAPTER 3.
Later we will learn how to avoid nested if statements. 32 CHAPTER 3. THE CL LANGUAGE In English, you might read this function to say “If the list is empty, return NIL. Otherwise, if the desired item is the same as the first of the list, return the entire list. ” Note that, for the purposes of any kind of logical operators, returning any non-NIL value is “as good as” returning T. So the possible return-values of the member function are as good as returning T or NIL as far as any logical operators are concerned.
For testing and “hacking” at the command prompt, this is acceptable, but in a finished program all such global variables should really be formally declared with defparameter or defvar. 10 Adding Elements to a List To add a single element to the front of a list, you can use the function cons: CL-USER(13): (cons ’a ’(b c d)) (A B C D) Cons is actually the low-level primitive function upon which many of the other list-constructing functions are built. ” As with append, cons is non-destructive, meaning it does no side-effecting (modification) to its arguments.