Future division patch available (PEP 238)

Paul Winkler paul at calendargalaxy.com
Wed Jul 25 18:31:38 CEST 2001


Christian Tanzer wrote:

> - Just a wild idea: the problem you want to solve is that the existing
>   division operator mixes two totally different meanings and thus
>   leads to nasty surprises.
> 
>   What if `/` applied to two integer values returned neither an
>   integer nor a float but an object carrying the float result but
>   behaving like an integer if used in an integer context?
> 
>   For instance:
> 
>       >>> x = 1/2
>       >>> type(x)
>       <type 'Ratio'>
>       >>> print "%d %f %s" % (x, x, x)
>       0 0.5 0.5
>       >>> 2 * x
>       0
>       >>> 2. * x
>       1.0

Intriguing, but it worries me. You're proposing a behavior for the / operator
where it still produces a different type depending on the operand types, and
this new type behaves differently in different contexts. I think that's just
trading the old can of worms for a (possibly much larger) new can of worms. I
thought the whole point of the PEP was to make division behave consistently -
that is, always return the same type of result regardless of the operands.

-- 
...................    paul winkler   ....................
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       A member of ARMS:   http://www.reacharms.com
            home page:  http://www.slinkp.com



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