[pypy-dev] interface changes (would-have-been: builtin -- getting started)

Christian Tismer tismer at tismer.com
Sat Mar 1 06:55:27 CET 2003

Hi friends,

as stated in my last message, I think that we suffer from
a lack of "recipies" how to get started, and we are all
eager to do some implementation.

I'd like to encourage everybody on this list to do get
started, although we are probably defining interfaces
"after the fact".
That menas, you may write something up, but you will
need to be aware that the interface might be changed.

This is not as bad as it sounds, it just means that
you shouldn't worry about the interfaces too much,
instead concentrate on the meat of the implementation.

Just to give you an example, I just discovered that "my"
integer object happened to change without notice. On
Armin's request, I dropped the "cmp" operator and implemented
rich comparisons. Suddenly, I today see my if-then-else
battery changed into six single functions. This is fine with
me, although I had appreciated some notice about that change,
either by private emails or by an automagic update magic
from Subversion -- anyway, this doesn't matter so much.

What does matter a bit is that we don't have a general
policy about interfaces, and that these appear to be changed
from time to time, without notice. I think it would be nice
not to change such things without notice, but to post
a request for interface change to the PyPy list, and maybe doing
the change after some confirmation. Essentially, this project
is not owned by a few people, but this is a community effort.
If this is not going to be a basic principle, I'd like to know,
and to be able to decide on myself, if I want to continue to
contribute. Open source is a nice thing, but I do think that
there should be some "netiquette" about changing "anyone's code".
At least, a notice of change is required. I don't believe that
we should adopt a concept of "godfathers" who are allowed to
mess with everything without at least owing the authors some
measures of a note!

Actually, I wanted to give some hints about contributing to
builtins, but unfortunately that change distracted me from
the point, so I'm going to write yet another posting,
to get at the point.

cheers - chris
Christian Tismer             :^)   <mailto:tismer at tismer.com>
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