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LISP (List Processing) is not simply a programming lanuage unique among all programming languages; it is a realization of a theoretical construction in the area of mathematical logic by Alonzo Church known as the lambda calculus of recursive functions. LISP is the physical relaization of this abstract computational tool, and was created by John McCarthy in the years 1956-1958. Thus, it is also one of the oldest and enduring programming languages, having only FORTRAN as rival. Though most modern implementations of LISP are very large languages with "environment lists" for saving function definitions and variable values, hundreds of functions, hence also of reserved words, additional data types such as numericals, strings, arrays, structures, macros, etc., the fundamentals are very few and can be used to display the unique thought processes that are involved in LISP programming. These additions are more a matter of convenience for the programmer.
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