Weblog:   More Lisp—For Free
Subject:   On Lisp not for faint of heart
Date:   2005-11-29 19:40:23
From:   eac
I would recommend that On Lisp is not only for programmers already familiar with Lisp, it's for programmers who've done at least one largish (n x 10^3 lines, 1 <= n <= 9) project in it. Especially chapters 11-25, and most especially chapters 18-25.
In fact, it recently occurred to me that one excellent way to learn Lisp would be to:
1) Go through SICP.
2) Write some small programs in Common Lisp to learn the differences.
3) Go through chapters 1-6 of On Lisp.
4) Do a large project in Common Lisp with the stuff you learned in chapters 1-6, and with reference help from ANSI Common Lisp.
5) Go through chapters 7-10 of On Lisp.
6) Write some noddy macros.
7) Go through chapters 11-17 of On Lisp, and 18 if you're really gung-ho.
8) Do a large project in Common Lisp, preferably a hard, large project, this time using macros.
9) Go through chapters 18-25 of On Lisp, and feel enlightened.
10) Do another large project in Common Lisp, a hard one, this time using an embedded language specific to your domain.

I didn't do it in quite that order, but I plan to now that I thought of it. I'm more or less on step 7, but can't continue right now because CMU CS is stupid and doesn't use Lisp.