A reader-macro way to create non-destructive nicknames within portable Common Lisp
I found that Lisp nicknames, as defined in CLHS, have a few problems that I will count here.
- They are not changeable without internal side-effects. RENAME-PACKAGE is destructive, as it kills off any previous names the package.
- They collide. Nickname GL is used by at least three different Lisp packages.
The solution I provide here is a different approach to nicknames that does not use any of the original nickname code, as defined in CLHS.
To begin quickly:
Pseudonyms, in opposition to nicknames, can be defined by the user inside one's code, like this:
> (defpseudonym :longpackagename "lpn")
And removed like this:
> (pmakunbound "lpn") ;; OR (pmakunbound :longpackagename)
From within the code, one can refer to a pseudonymized package this way:
A reader macro will automatically translate it to its normal version of
longpackagename:something. This is usable both within the REPL and within usual code.
The reader macro character is also settable from the default
> (set-pseudonym-macro-character #\^)
All pseudonyms are local to the current package: for instance, pseudonyms defined within CL-USER are not usable anywhere outside the CL-USER package.
An utility function
print-pseudonyms will print all pseudonyms for a given package. If not supplied a package name as an argument, it will print all pseudonyms for current package (as shown by the
*package* global variable).