Necessity of ``pass''
wtanksle at dolphin.openprojects.net
Tue Aug 24 04:18:53 CEST 1999
On 23 Aug 1999 23:32:44 +0200, forcer wrote:
>Lately, i've been thinking about Python. While it is an
>exceptionally clean language, it has one very obvious wart:
>The ``pass'' statement.
I disagree that 'pass' is an obvious wart. I think it's very nice.
>To quote the reference manual:
> pass is a null operation -- when it is executed, nothing
> happens. It is useful as a placeholder when a statement is
> required syntactically, but no code needs to be executed, for
> def f(arg): pass # a function that does nothing (yet)
>one could write
> if foo:
>Syntactically this does not introduce any ambiguity. The only
>problem i see is that the "pass" version is more readable.
Precisely. You're suggesting a change with the sole purpose of reducing
redundancy. The problem is that humans _need_ redundancy. Not only does
redundancy help us to read the code, it also helps the computer to find
Another example of redundancy in Python -- and one with just as much
chance of being changed -- is the ':' symbol. Take a look at the following:
if foo: pass
if foo pass
As you see, the colons aren't necessary. They're only there as a
convenience to the programmers and readers.
-William "Billy" Tanksley
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