[Python-Dev] Revising RE docs

Stephen J. Turnbull stephen at xemacs.org
Thu Sep 1 07:41:45 CEST 2005

>>>>> "Greg" == Greg Ewing <greg.ewing at canterbury.ac.nz> writes:

    Greg> Stephen J. Turnbull wrote:

    >> But you could have string objects (or a derivative) grow a
    >> "compiled_regexp" attribute internally.

    Greg> That would make the core dependent on the re module, which I
    Greg> think would be a bad idea.


    Greg> Personally I like the way the compilation step is made at
    Greg> least somewhat explicit. Regular expressions are not
    Greg> strings; a string is just one way of representing a regular
    Greg> expression. There could potentially be other representations
    Greg> that compile to the same re object.

I guess I agree, but I would put the emphasis elsewhere.  Something
like, think of the call to compile() as a declaration that this string
(or other representation) represents a regular expression.  The actual
compilation is an accidental side effect: it could be postponed to the
first call of .match() or .search().

So I guess I would prefer a nomenclature like

    r = re.RegExp (string)


    r = re.compile (string)

Not a big deal though.

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