Lisp is worth learning for the profound enlightenment experience you will have when you finally get it; that experience will make you a better programmer for the rest of your days, even if you never actually use Lisp itself — Eric Raymond
In ancient times people set each other puzzles such as:
Can God make a stone so heavy that he can't lift it?
These puzzles-of-omnipotence can be rephrased in theory-of-computation lingo:
Can God compute the uncomputable?
If he can, how is it uncomputable?
If he cant, how is he God?
So what are those limits of/by structure? Unsurprisingly related to God-el's theorem:
God-el's Theorem says that for any record player, there are records which it cannot play because they will cause it to self-destruct
And like record players what about programming languages whose abstractions can be arranged to break the language?
Structure is good because it reduces breakage; its bad because it imprisons us into precooked forms.
Following I explore the space between poverty and universality; a space which for want of a better word I will simply call structure, the most elusive being the structure of syntax.