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The Seasoned Schemer Paperback – 1 Feb 1996

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Product details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: MIT Press (1 Feb. 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 026256100X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0262561006
  • Product Dimensions: 17.5 x 1.3 x 22.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 340,909 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

"I learned more about LISP from this book than I have from any of the other LISP books I've read over the years... While other books will tell you the mechanics of LISP, they can leave you largely uninformed on the style of problem-solving for which LISP is optimized. The Little LISPer teaches you how to think in the LISP language... an inexpensive, enjoyable introduction." Gregg Williams, Byte

About the Author

Daniel P. Friedman is Professor of Computer Science at Indiana University and coauthor of The Little Schemer (fourth edition), The Reasoned Schemer, The Seasoned Schemer, and Essentials of Programming Languages (third edition), all published by the MIT Press. Matthias Felleisen is Trustee Professor of Computer Science at Northeastern University, recipient of the Karl V. Karlstrom Outstanding Educator Award, and co-author (with Daniel Friedman) of The Little Schemer and three other "Little" books published by the MIT Press.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 2 Nov. 2000
Format: Paperback
This book has a strange layout, its layed out in two columns, questions on the left, answers on the right and line after each question, its that important, its just strange. DO NOT SKIP A CHAPTER! this is VERY important, you must read AND UNDERSTAND each chapter before advancing otherwise you will get very confused, i would also reccomend reading the littler schemer before hand.
eitherway, very good book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A. J. Gauld VINE VOICE on 9 Jan. 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
It took me 3 attempts to get through The Little Schemer and having done so I bought this sequel. It picks up exactly where the former leaves off - even the chapter numbering starts at 11! It takes no prisoners in the way of reviewing material and jumps right into quite advanced topics. If you like books that challenge you this is good. If you want a tutorial on Scheme there are better choices around.
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Format: Paperback
I've put this book #8 in my Top 100 Programming, Computer and Science books list:

http://www.catonmat.net/blog/top-100-books-part-two/

The Seasoned Schemer is continuation of The Little Schemer that I listed as my #4 favorite book in the first part of this series. This book is written in the same style as The Little Schemer and it's extremely fun to read. It's a dialogue between you and the authors but unlike The Little Schemer that teaches you to think recursively this book teaches you to think about the nature of computation. You'll learn about closures, continuations and continuation passing style (cps), y-combinator and implement your own Lisp in Lisp at the end.
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Format: Paperback
This is the logical prosecution of the Little Schemer.
It is far more interesting because it really shows scheme uniqueness.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 8 reviews
29 of 29 people found the following review helpful
Excellent book on thinking recursively 27 July 2000
By Brent Fulgham - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This book is the second half of "The Little Schemer". It expects you to have mastered the previous volume, so it starts fast and picks up speed from there.
It covers a lot of ground in a slim volume (just as in "The Little Schemer"). This book introduces the concepts of closures and call-with-current-continuation (among other things).
As with "The Little Schemer", this book's strength is in its socratic instruction method. Lessons are written and illustrated as conversations between the reader and the instructor (in question/answer format). While this sounds strange, it is actually surprisingly effective as a means of learning the material. It might seem somewhat like rote instruction, but it can often frame foreign concepts in a rememberable fashion.
Neither of these books require much in the way of background or familiarity with the material. They were created as a means of teaching non-programmers to program in Scheme. However, I think they hold value for trained programmers as well.
17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
Entertaining reading for people who know the material 2 Jan. 2010
By Code Monkey - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
The Seasoned Schemer continues where the The Little Schemer - 4th Edition (a truly marvelous book) left off. It aims to extend the readers understanding of programming techniques and the Scheme programming language. It covers many interesting topics like memoization, the interchangeability of functions and data, mutable state, and programming with continuations.

Unfortunately The Seasoned Schemer has a strong inclination towards inside jokes for people who already know the material. In the process of charming the experienced reader it risks losing novices. How does a reference to Alonzo Church using call-with-current-continuation tell the novice that letcc is not available in many Scheme implementations? Why is there no real explanation of when and where to apply the "12th commandment" (use letrec to remove arguments that do not change for recursive application)? Why does a discussion about using closures and functions to model data structures devolve into trivia about circular lists? The text often seems like a sequence of such programming gems littered in a book with few clues for eyes unaccustomed to recognizing gems.

People familiar with the subject matter will enjoy the charming and concise discussion of fundamental (and often difficult) ideas. Other readers are probably better served by reading a proper text book on programming in Scheme. It's a real pity though, because once you get the inside jokes this really is a fine book! Just don't use it as your first book on programming in LISP like languages.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
A Valuable Extension To The Little Schemer 5 Oct. 2009
By Matthew J. Davis - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The book picks up and demonstrates using to letcc (call with current continuation) to speed up delivery of results or to simply forget pending applications and return to an outer list of s-expressions. Additionally there is more using of letrec and the demonstration of of using set!. The final chapter once again looks at creating the language within the language but this time including 'define' and using set! to update closures. If you felt reasonably confident with the Little Schemer you should be fine reading this extension book, and you will likely be much more confident with any lisp like languages having read it.
6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
introduces the rest of scheme (almost) 3 Sept. 2006
By Patrick Regan - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
The Seasoned Schemer continues where the Little Schemer left off introducing local variables via let and it's variations including letrec. Set!, the syntax for changing a variables value is introduced. Continuations, as used for escaping from an computation and for going back to previous position in code are also introduced. There are less references to the accomplishments of famous computer scientists in this book than in the Little Schemer which I found to be disappointing. However, I greatly enjoyed this book and would recommend it to anyone wanting to increase their understanding of the Scheme programming language. Although scheme's vector data type is not introduced, I think you will have enough of an understanding of Scheme after reading this book to make substantial programs.
0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Extremely fun to read. 8 May 2015
By Peteris Krumins - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I've put this book #8 in my Top 100 Programming, Computer and Science books list:

http://www.catonmat.net/blog/top-100-books-part-two/

The Seasoned Schemer is continuation of The Little Schemer that I listed as my #4 favorite book in the first part of this series. This book is written in the same style as The Little Schemer and it's extremely fun to read. It's a dialogue between you and the authors but unlike The Little Schemer that teaches you to think recursively this book teaches you to think about the nature of computation. You'll learn about closures, continuations and continuation passing style (cps), y-combinator and implement your own Lisp in Lisp at the end.
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