[Edu-sig] More on teaching about namespaces

Kevin Driscoll driscollkevin at gmail.com
Wed Sep 13 22:18:10 CEST 2006

It took about 150 emails but all of this raw_input() discussion has
finally brought us to a revalatory new place!

raw_input() and print() are comfy places to begin because that's where
my high school Pascal text began.  And that's where my college C text
began.  And that's where "How to think like a computer scientist"

Two texts that have inspired my thinking this year are "Learn to
Program" from the Pragmatic Bookshelf and  "Why's (poignant) guide to
Ruby", the single best piece of CS writing I've seen in at least two

Anyone who loved newsprint BASIC manuals full of nerdy jokes and
little ballpoint pen comics will love it :


PS. The Ruby v. Python debate is moot.

On 9/13/06, Arthur <ajsiegel at optonline.net> wrote:
> kirby urner wrote:
> >What I like about namespaces is the idea is intuitively obvious to
> >anyone spending any time in academia, because every professor is one.
> >It takes time to learn just what each means by this or that key term,
> >although supposedly in math it's easier, because all the definitions
> >are agreed upon in advance, axioms too, plus rules of deduction, so
> >the theorems also.
> >
> >My idea of a good first move, after booting some Python GUI shell for
> >the first time, is to go dir().
> >
> >IDLE 1.2b2
> >
> >
> >>>>dir()
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >['__builtins__', '__doc__', '__name__']
> >
> >Already the filling is:  we're not alone.  And what are those weird
> >__xxx__ things.  They look strange.  Thinking like a computer
> >scientist, you mentally pair tics and decide we have three quoted
> >words, like a list of some time.  See?  Python fits your brain.
> >You're already thinking like a pro.  Instead of words we say strings,
> >and a space is just one more character (ASCII 32).
> >
> >
> Damn it if I don't agree.
> Exactly where I would start as well.
> Art
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