Exception handling wart in Python

Tim Peters tim.one at home.com
Fri Nov 2 20:43:25 CET 2001


[James_Althoff at i2.com]
> But to be fair, you have to admit it's only *half* as ugly as the
> double leading underscore plus double *trailing* underscore convention
> (I know, it's *suppose* to be ugly -- and it succeeds admirably in this
> regard! ;-)
>
> (Assuming here, for simplicity, that ugliness is linear).

Across the entire base of Python programmers active on March 17, 1995, a
six-day exhaustive accounting determined that

__x__

was deemed to be a mean of 2.7x uglier than

__x

with a (population) std deviation of 0.42.  Curiously, 79% thought that

_x

was (and I quote) "cute".  On the seventh day, Guido rested.  I tried in
vain to point out that a large number of Python programmers at the time were
also C system programmers, so were desensitized against seeing names of the
forms __x and _X as "ugly".  So I hypothesize that the perceived relative
ugliness of __x__ would increase were we to secure funding sufficient to
repeat the study with today's larger programmer base.

send-your-checks-to-the-psu-ly y'rs  - tim





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