[Python-ideas] allow `lambda' to be spelled λ

Giampaolo Rodola' g.rodola at gmail.com
Thu Jul 14 19:18:55 EDT 2016

On Fri, Jul 15, 2016 at 12:27 AM, Paul Moore <p.f.moore at gmail.com> wrote:

> On 14 July 2016 at 23:13, John Wong <gokoproject at gmail.com> wrote:
> > Why should I write pi in two English characters instead of typing π?
> Python
> > is so popular among the science community, so shouldn't we add that as
> well?
> > Excerpt from the question on
> >
> http://programmers.stackexchange.com/questions/16010/is-it-bad-to-use-unicode-characters-in-variable-names
> :
> >
> > t = (µw-µl)/c  # those are used in
> > e = ε/c        # multiple places.
> > σw_new = (σw**2 * (1 - (σw**2)/(c**2)*Wwin(t, e)) + γ**2)**.5
> I'm not sure what you're saying here. You do realise that the above is
> perfectly valid Python 3? The SO question you quote is referring to
> the fact that identifiers are restricted to (Unicode) *letters* and
> that symbol characters can't be used as variable names.
> All of which is tangential to the question here which is about using
> Unicode in a *keyword*.

I would personally feel bad about using non-ASCII or even non-english
variable names in code. Heck, I feel so bad about non-ASCII in code that I
even mispell the à in my last name (Rodolà) and type a' instead. Extending
that to a keyword sounds even worse.
When Python 3 was cooking I remember there were debates on whether removing
"lambda". It stayed, and I'm glad it did, but IMO that should tell it's not
important enough to deserve the breakage of a rule which has never been
broken (non-ASCII for a keyword).

Giampaolo - http://grodola.blogspot.com
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