[Python-ideas] list of reserved identifiers in program?

Mark Hackett mark.hackett at metoffice.gov.uk
Fri Oct 26 11:58:51 CEST 2012

On Friday 26 Oct 2012, Steven D'Aprano wrote:
> On 26/10/12 20:22, Daniel Fetchinson wrote:
> > Hi folks,
> >
> > Would it be a good idea to have a built-in list of strings containing
> > the reserved identifiers of python such as 'assert', 'import', etc?
> >
> > The reason I think this would be useful is that whenever I write a
> > class with user defined methods I always have to exclude the reserved
> > keywords. So for instance myinstance.mymethod( ) is okay but
> > myinstance.assert( ) is not. In these cases I use the convention
> > myinstance._assert( ), etc.
> The usual convention is that leading underscores are private, and
> trailing underscores are used to avoid name clashes with reserved words.
> So myinstance.assert_ rather than myinstance._assert, which would be
> considered "private, do not use".

One story I heard about development was a site that had included as an early 
C++ header had

#define private public

If users REALLY want to use a function you though was private, they will.

Convention works just as well without having people go to extreme lengths to 
avoid it (where their use case makes it beneficial).

More information about the Python-ideas mailing list