[Python-Dev] Re: PEP 279 revisited

Alex Martelli aleax@aleax.it
Wed, 24 Apr 2002 11:19:18 +0200

On Wednesday 24 April 2002 09:49 am, Scott Gilbert wrote:
> > > There doesn't seem to be any single English word that
> > > captures all of what we mean without ambiguity.
> >
> > Not a single VERB -- adjective "numbered" might do.  Unfortunately
> > [...]
> If there is no really good name, how about just adopting a new simple,
> short, word like "each", and letting it become the idiom?
>     for i, v in each(L):
>         print i, v
> It worked for "zip" right?

I'd just love something like this, but unfortunately the precedent you
cite probably does not apply: 'zip' is indeed a verb, 'each' is, alas, not.

What's now named 'enumerate', incidentally, is a type (just like 'tuple',
'dict', 'str' -- all consistently non-verbs, and types rather than functions
since a few months), so I'm not quite sure why it should be a verb
(what other types' names are verbs, except for the slight ambiguity
of 'list' or 'file', which I've always perceived in the noun-sense anyway?).

Of course, if a noun was to be chosen instead, 'enumeration' and
'itemization' would be horrid (long and cumbersome), but maybe
some other alternatives could be more appealing.  'items', for example,
would be appealing to me personally (by the already mentioned
"rough analogy" with a dictionary's .items method -- which turns
others off by being only rough and not exact, so that D.items()
and items(D) would be different sequences of pairs, albeit with
similar structures, for just about any dict D).