[Baypiggies] Frequently Argued Objections

Andrew Toulouse andrew at atoulou.se
Mon Jun 23 18:23:38 CEST 2008

This is why I would not like dot-as-self -- it would eliminate some amount
of clarity for new Python programmers. I'm somewhat embarrassed that when I
took a Ruby on Rails class (the first semester it was offered), I managed to
get by *not* knowing what @ did, since it wasn't immediately obvious. Having
an implicit 'this' or 'self' would have helped, but best of all (IMO) was
discovering Python and the explicit self - I no longer had to confuse
myself! Sure, it's not difficult to discover what the code means without the
explicit self, but it's not as straightforward (to me). I've programmed in
Java and C++ sometimes, but I don't have the years of experience with them
that makes the implicit self/this second nature. Python's all about the
clarity (IMO) -- I've yet to find another language where comprehension is as
unhindered by syntax as in Python.


On Mon, Jun 23, 2008 at 8:40 AM, Alex Martelli <aleax at google.com> wrote:

> Within the "explicit mark" camp, Ruby's "@var" is typographically
> concise but conceptually bends Occam's razor -- it makes the language
> introduce one more rule (on the meaning of a "@" prefix) where the
> choice that Python took from Modula-3 just reuses an existing rule
> (whatever.var means exactly the same in all cases, whether "whatever"
> is "self" or something other than "self" -- no special cases, no extra
> rules).
> Alex
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