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The Scheme Programming Language Paperback – July 31, 2009

ISBN-13: 978-0262512985 ISBN-10: 026251298X Edition: fourth edition

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 504 pages
  • Publisher: The MIT Press; fourth edition edition (July 31, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 026251298X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0262512985
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 0.8 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #131,876 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"Kent Dybvig's The Scheme Programming Language is to Scheme what Kernighan and Ritchie's The C Programming Language is to C. Kent's book is the book for either the novice or serious Scheme programmer. Its style, wit, and organization has reached a new high with the publication of the fourth edition."--Daniel P. Friedman, Department of Computer Science, Indiana University



"This fourth edition builds on the strengths of the previous editions and provides a comprehensive, no-nonsense introduction to the Scheme programming language in its latest form. The combination of solidity and finesse displayed in this book makes it a reference text for educated computer scientists. The accompanying software, Petite Chez Scheme, makes it the ideal starting point for any programmer who wants to extend his or her repertoire with Scheme." --Olivier Danvy, Aarhus University, Denmark, co-Editor-in-Chief of Higher-Order and Symbolic Computation

(Olivier Danvy)

"Eric Raymond once wrote that learning Lisp makes one a better programmer for the rest of one's days. Scheme is the best dialect of Lisp to learn for this purpose, and Kent Dybvig's book provides a comprehensive and beautiful introduction to learning Scheme and becoming a better programmer." Olivier Danvy , Aarhus University, Denmark, co-Editor-in-Chief of Higher-Order and Symbolic Computation

About the Author

R. Kent Dybvig is Professor of Computer Science at Indiana University and principal developer of Chez Scheme.

More About the Author

R. Kent Dybvig is professor of computer science in Indiana University's School of Informatics and Computing and the creator and principal developer of Chez Scheme. Chez Scheme is a full-featured commercial implementation of Scheme, known for fast compile times and the ability to compile and run even large programs efficiently and reliably. Dybvig is also author of The Scheme Programming Language, 4th edition (MIT Press 2009) and served as Chair of the editors committee for the Revised^6 Report on Scheme.

www.scheme.com

Customer Reviews

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It is very readable, and clear.
Anthony Panos
Nonetheless, I still consider this a good introduction to the Scheme language and would gladly recommend it to the aspirant Schemer.
V. Coetzee
This is an excellent book on Scheme, that covers R5RS thoroughly.
Daniel

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

47 of 47 people found the following review helpful By Daniel on May 9, 2005
Format: Paperback
This is an excellent book on Scheme, that covers R5RS thoroughly. The first part is a succint tutorial, most useful for those of us with no previous knowledge of functional programming: manipulation of lists, continuations, macros, etc. It is very clear, with plenty of solved examples and exercises. The second part is a thorough reference on every keyword and function of R5RS. There is nary a reference to particular implementations of Scheme, so it should be useful to everybody.

This is a dry book. I say this to its advantage. There are no extraneous comments nor attempts at being funny, yet the text is perfectly readable.

Typography is the truly standard TeX fare, and it looks very nice and 'functional'. Format is a bit wide, which helps the book to stay open where one leaves it open.

Many useful quasi-standard features outside R5RS (ie the SRFI's) are not covered. But for learning and practicing the language itself, I doubt there is a better choice. On the other hand, the full text of the book (and a handful of errata) is available online, should you not believe me (...)
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36 of 39 people found the following review helpful By BENNARDO FRANCESCO on June 9, 2005
Format: Paperback
As I said in a past review to the second edition, this book is wonderful. This book has convinced me to migrate from Common Lisp to Scheme. This is a serious book for the one that really wants to learn about Scheme and require careful study and a strong motivation. Please note: if you are really interested to learn Scheme, then this book is for you; if you are not really interested and/or you like to joke, this book is absolutely not for you. The book is accurate, complete, well written and cover all you need about the modern Scheme. I use Scheme for personal study about bioinformatics. Thanks to the Autor.
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23 of 24 people found the following review helpful By V. Coetzee on January 18, 2008
Format: Paperback
I purchased this book specifically with a view to learning the Scheme language. The text is easy to read, is pithy and to the point, and generally makes concepts clear and easy to understand. There are however, in my opinion, some sections where the author forgets that concepts are new to the reader and the examples that are used tend to obfuscate the point being made rather than elucidating it.

I have never considered myself stupid, but after my 5th reading of the introduction to continuations I was beginning to worry. A quick reading of another text on the subject cleared up my concerns almost immediately which suggests to me that the explanations are not as clear as they could be. There are some other areas of the book where this sort of assumption makes grasping a new concept more difficult than it should be.

Nonetheless, I still consider this a good introduction to the Scheme language and would gladly recommend it to the aspirant Schemer.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Narada on April 27, 2010
Format: Paperback
Clear, to the point, nice exercises, does not put on airs. Other "Scheme books" are really about something else. Eg, SICP (Structure and Interpretation of Computer Programs - 2nd Edition (MIT Electrical Engineering and Computer Science)) is an introduction to programming, which uses the "scheme machine" as the virtual hardware, and is not really a good introduction to the language (at MIT this was done in tutorials and through self-study). Various "Schemer" books (eg, The Little Schemer - 4th Edition) are more collections of puzzles, which I, personally, find rather annoying, since the authors DO tend to put on airs -- Scheme is just a programming language, don't make it sound like you are giving the proof of the Riemann Hypothesis.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By J. Hosteny on January 16, 2008
Format: Paperback
I'm a fan of a lot of the popular Scheme or Scheme related books (SICP, The Little Schemer, The Seasoned Schemer). While in some sense this book takes a more pragmatic approach than the aforementioned books, it is no less valuable. I found this book helpful as a teaching aid while learning Scheme, and as a reference for my continued use of the language.

Advanced topics, such as continuations and the syntax-rules and syntax-case macro systems, get good treatment from this book.

Highly recommended.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By vsayer on July 19, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Great text for learning scheme. I got into Scheme first because I heard it's more minimal than Common Lisp. Scheme was developed at MIT's AI lab and this book is published by MIT press, so I would trust this book.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Alessandro Faelli on March 18, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I think the book is not useful as a first book for learning the Scheme language, instead it is very important as a reference. I don't open it very often, but when I need to know something about the language, I do it because I a can find the answer.
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