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re: It is a time to think of many things, ...

>Are BWK/DMR all reved up to do "The Limbo Programming Language"?

Rob and Howard are working on a book. The books is very much
a practical guide to programming in inferno.

>well served by a big book."  Can/could the same be done/said for Limbo?

Just compare the sizes of the reference manuals

>Does this suggest some failure of the "run anywhere" idea?

API's have become a new currency in the computer business. If you
are incapable of designing a system that contains the primitives
people can build complex things from, and your performance sucks
you are forced to continually specialize the system. I would be
very suprised if the original authors were not unhappy about the
current situation. It is also clear that the people currently
producing these API's are nowhere near as competant as the original
designers. Javasoft has become a victim of its own marketing.

>Can a language be separated from its libraries?

probably, but why is that desirable? Limbo+Inferno is proof that
a fairly narrow interface can provide a plausible working environment.

>Are there valid comparisons among languages based on quantities of  such

Big API's lead to big code. I cite X and Win32 as my examples.