[Python-ideas] English builtins for Python

Steve Howell showell30 at yahoo.com
Fri Jun 22 04:15:50 CEST 2007

--- Greg Ewing <greg.ewing at canterbury.ac.nz> wrote:

> Steve Howell wrote:
> > suggest that articles (as builtins) are just
> > somehow *wrong* in programming languages.  Yet
> they're
> > so incredible popular in "natural" languages.
> Popularity of a given feature in natural languages
> doesn't necessarily imply optimality -- it could
> just be a result of those languages having a common
> ancestor.

Sure, but languages do evolve.  Two examples:

  1) The more popular words tend to get shortened over

  2) Languages tend to appropriate only the most
expressive words or phrases from other languages.

> Linguists have concluded that most of the languages
> in use today, even ones that seem very different,
> can be traced back to a single ancestral language.

Same for programming languages to a certain degree. 
For example, Python has some stuff from C that would
arguably not be there if it had been designed in a
vacuum, but it traces some of its roots to C.

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