There’s a fantastic showcase of succesfull Common Lisp software on so go there first.

However all are not open source and it doesn’t list new or not so awesome but very cool or interesting software. That’s what we’ll do here to see that yeah Lisp is used today and to have code bases to look at.

If you are looking for CL libraries, you of course had a look to the Awesome CL list.

Awesome Lisp software

the new code base and feature set seems to attract way more users than the previous implementation ever did, despite using a less popular programming language.

  • pgchart - a self-contained web application that takes as input an SQL query text and outputs its data as a chart. By the same Dimitri Fontaine.

  • potato - a Slack-like conversation platform. Many features. CL in the backend, ClojureScript to the frontend. Apache Solr, RabbitMQ, email updates,… Web, Emacs and Android clients. web coding video.

  • turtl - a security focused online note taking app. Deployed at scale at Framanotes. Backend in CL.


  • nEXT browser - Qt based web browser.
  • cl-torrents - (my) library, cli and readline app to search for torrents on popular trackers, with an extensive tutorial.

Publishing software

  • Coleslaw - a static site generator similar to Jekyll. With nifty features (build on git push,…). Example blog:
  • Radiance - publishing software, between CMS and framework.
  • Reader - a simple blogging platform for Radiance.
  • Purplish - an imageboard app for Radiance.


  • Darkmatter - Common Lisp notebook (also exists cl-jupyter). Built on Clack.

  • Lem - an Emacs clone tailored for Common Lisp development, for the terminal or Electron. Screencast.

GUI apps

  • Halftone - a multiplatform and portable image viewer. Simple app to demo building Qt GUIs with Qtools.

Terminal apps

todo: enhance !

  • Pml - cli tool to parse my nginx logs and print statistics (and Tankfeeder for apache)
  • shuffletron - a terminal music player. [staling]
  • shtookovina - a program to help learn natural languages, based on audio recording by the Shtooka project, with an advanced readline interface and fully hackable in Common Lisp. Deprecated since 2015.