[Matrix-SIG] Zeros

Greg Kochanski gpk@bell-labs.com
Mon, 31 Jan 2000 11:49:45 -0500

"Paul F. Dubois" wrote:

> I question seriously whether Numerical should have any support for
> non-numeric types, actually.
> It causes serious complications for very little
> real gain. There is an array object in the core that might suit your needs.

True enough.  However, I use _Numeric_ instead of _array_, to reduce the
of modules that need to be imported.  Personally, I see little
reason for the array module to continue to exist, given Numeric.

One characteristic of a good programming language is that it
minimizes the amount of stuff the programmer needs to memorize.
Why have two nearly equivalent array modules, and force people
to memorize the differences and special cases?
Programming is not just a case of MFLOPS and storage efficiency:
often development and maintenance time is the limiting factor,
which is why I'd rather bring in one module instead of two.

> Also, the Python list type will do what you want perfectly well: [None] * n.
> If you have an application where n is so large that storage is an issue it
> would be surprising. 

The issue is not storage so much as having a uniform programming