[Python-Dev] Re: lists v. tuples

Chermside, Michael mcherm@mcherm.com
Fri, 14 Mar 2003 15:13:39 -0500

Just writes:
> It's not so much the inheritance hierarchy that I like about the Cocoa
> core classes, but the fact that mutability is a prominent part of the
> design. I think Python would be a better language if it had a mutable
> string type as well as a mutable byte-oriented data type. An immutable
> dict would be handy at times. An immutable list type would be great,
> too. Wait, we already have that.

I've often had the same thought myself. I'm imagining designing my
own language, and I note that both mutable and immutable strings are
handy, depending on what you're doing. The same is true of data
containers (of all sorts, lists and dicts being examples). "What the
heck?" I say to myself, "In *my* perfect language, there'll be
mutable and immutable versions of every object. (With the obvious
conversion behavior.) Why, you won't even have to code them
separately... just specify some property indicating whether or not
that instance is mutable."

Then I realize that C++ has exactly this feature (it's called "const"),
and that I find it to be an annoyance far more often than I find it
handy. And I begin to question.


-- Michael Chermside