[Python-Dev] Naming comprehension syntax [was Re: Informal educator feedback on PEP 572 ...]
Guido van Rossum
guido at python.org
Mon Jul 9 16:18:07 EDT 2018
Definitely docs first. And we should keep references to generator
expressions too, if only to explain that they've been renamed.
Perhaps someone should try it out in a 3rd party tutorial to see how it
goes? I'm CC'ing Raymond Hettinger.
On Mon, Jul 9, 2018 at 12:57 PM Brett Cannon <brett at python.org> wrote:
> On Mon, 9 Jul 2018 at 12:05 Guido van Rossum <guido at python.org> wrote:
>> I think this is worth a try.
> How far do we want to go with this? Update the docs? Update the grammar
> and/or code? I think the former is probably good enough for now to see if
> it takes, and if it does then we can talk about updating code to not
> confuse people.
>> On Mon, Jul 9, 2018 at 12:04 PM Chris Barker - NOAA Federal <
>> chris.barker at noaa.gov> wrote:
>>> +1 on advocating the term “generator comprehension” as a synonym for
>>> “generator expression” in future documentation and instructional
>>> The long version:
>>> If we were starting from scratch, maybe it would makes sense to use “
>>> builder” or something else, rather than comprehension. But we’re not
>>> starting from scratch.
>>> And “list comprehension” has become a pretty universal (or at least
>>> common) term in the python world. So we really can’t expect to re-name
>>> And despite the term having its roots in an esoteric corner of
>>> mathematics, I’ve never seen anyone confused by it — it’s just a new
>>> word for a new thing to most folks.
>>> Which is actually why “generator expression” is a bit confusing — it
>>> seems to have more in common with comprehensions than with generators
>>> (As in: the things functions with a yield in them produce)
>>> In fact, the term “generator” is a bit confusing itself — due to it
>>> being a common English word, it seems to refer to the generic idea of
>>> “a thing that generates values on the fly”, which, of course it can be
>>> in Python. But it actually is a specific type. And you can make a
>>> “thing that generates values in the fly” with a regular class that
>>> follows the iterator protocol.
>>> So re-using the word in “generator expression” just adds a bit to the
>>> confusion. (Even though it’s technically correct, it does “make” an
>>> actual generator object, doesn’t it? (On a phone, so I can’t check)
>>> but that’s kind of an implementation detail.
>>> Also: if you google: “python list comprehension” you get a LOT of hits
>>> to tutorials, etc.
>>> So it is WAY too late to change that name.
>>> When you google “python generator expression” the top hit is the
>>> python docs, and the next few are about comparing generator
>>> expressions and list comprehensions.
>>> So I think we could start a new naming scheme for those.
>>> ‘cause then we’d get lost of questions about the difference between
>>> generator expressions and generator comprehensions ;-)
>> --Guido van Rossum (python.org/~guido)
--Guido van Rossum (python.org/~guido)
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