User interface

George Greene greeneg at
Wed Dec 17 05:32:13 AEDT 1997

Have you ever heard of LPA (Logic Programming Associates) ?

It seems that you have the fastest variant of Prolog,
while they have the prettiest.  Unfortunately, direct
comparisons are difficult because your benchmarks ran 
under Solaris, while their compilers run under Windows/NT
and the Mac.  But the basic idea is, they have a way
for people to construct interactive/web applications using
a Prolog-like syntax.

I am a graduate student in computer science at the
University of North Carolina.  I am beginning a dissertation
in automated deduction under the direction of Dr. David Plaisted.
I am going to have to develop a theorem-prover, a first-order
inference engine, in some language or another.  
Historically, we have implemented
our provers in Prolog, but it is so slow that we never place well
in competitions.  We were thinking about curing that by having
me implement our research-cluster's next theorem-prover in Mercury.
However, in order for the world at large to use it easily, we
would need a web-page via which they could submit proof-problems
to it and set various options guiding how it should search for a
proof.  We could do that work in Perl or Java, but it would be
better if the variant of Prolog we were using had a library
supporting a window- or web-oriented user-interface.  Because
LPA has that capability, we are thinking about using them,
even though they are slower and cost more.  But if there are
any plans for you to add such a library to Mercury, we might
be able to spare ourselves the expense of dealing with LPA.

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