[Python-ideas] And now for something completely different

Cliff Wells cliff at develix.com
Fri Sep 19 22:59:31 CEST 2008

On Fri, 2008-09-19 at 16:06 -0400, Greg Falcon wrote:

> This whole discussion, with the non-starter proposal of resurrecting
> backticks to solve a non-problem, reminds me of an eloquent post
> earlier this year on the Lua mailing list from Fabien Fleutot:
>   http://lua-users.org/lists/lua-l/2008-02/msg00247.html
> A part of it applies here almost verbatim.  With two changes to
> reflect Python instead:
>     What drives people so crazy about it? It's not the couple of extra
>     keystrokes, nor the screen real estate eaten by [lambda:a+b]; it's
>     the fact that the current syntax carries a message they strongly
>     disagree with, which says: "anonymous functions are not a
>     lightweight feature to be used pervasively, passing them as
>     function parameters is not the [Python] Way, that's why it looks
>     syntactically odd. If you use them, it ought to be because you do
>     something exceptional, so your code should have a somewhat
>     exceptional appearance". They feel wrong when they use it, and
>     they think they ought to feel good.

This is a pretty compelling argument.  The reason this concept works so
well in Io is because it's consistent (and is therefore unsurprising)
whereas in Python it doesn't fit in the overall scheme of things (it's

I guess at the end of the day I'm just left with no longer liking the
"Python Way".  Fair enough.


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