Case-sensitivity: why -- or why not? (was Re: Damnation!)

Paul Jackson pj at sgi.com
Wed May 24 00:05:09 CEST 2000


richard_chamberlain wrote:
> When we teach our children to write we teach them case sensitivity,

Ah - but we teach them that case is partially context sensitive.

Formal names are always capitalized, but most words are only
capitalized at the start of a sentence.

Can you imagine it being that "light" meant of little weight,
whereas a "LIGHT" was a photon emitter, "LIghT" a stream of
photons, and to "liGHt" something was to set fire to it?

--

Still, I would caution Guido against making too much of the
Alice work.  At least in my couple of attempts to introduce
myself and my son to it, it was not particularly compelling
(in contrast to, say, Pokemon), nor intuitive, nor (at least
on my Windows system) stable (that is, it kept crashing).

Granted, I sometimes joke that I dream in 'C', and have to
translate to English for my shrink (which is to say I'm an old
hacker).  But in my view there is a difference between coding
programs in an editor, and working in an end user environment.

Perhaps there is someway to enable case INsensitive frontends
to Python 3000, while still working with the current case
sensitivity "under the covers".  Sort of like the difference
between having a (mostly) case INsensitive WYSIWYG structured
document composer frontend, over a (somewhat more) case
sensitive XML.

--

That is, instead of thinking of this as a problem of how to
make case INsensitivity palatable to the hackers, rather think
of this as a problem of how to _present_ case sensitivity to
the End User, in a way that is sensitive their natural language
(e.g., English) sensibilities.

... I sense that I should shut up now ...

-- 

=======================================================================
I won't rest till it's the best ...	   Software Production Engineer
Paul Jackson (pj at sgi.com; pj at usa.net) 3x1373 http://sam.engr.sgi.com/pj



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