Non-Indented python

Chris Barker chrishbarker at
Thu Nov 29 19:05:19 CET 2001

Tim Peters wrote:

> > If it is true that there is general consensus about this, is there any
> > movement to disallow it altogether in the Python interpreter?
> Nope.  The "nanny" in "tabnanny" is there for a reason:  grownups have no
> problems here.

I don't think that's true. I often start working on a file I got from
elsewhere with tabs in it, get some wierd error, eventually think to
check for tabs. Then I run a script on it, clean it up, and all is well.
This would be a WHOLE LOT easier if I got a "syntax error: mixed tabs
and spaces" the first time I ran it. And what would we lose???

There are a lot of issue swith backward compatabilty, but this is one
cse where you could run a simple script over any previously valid code
and get valid code back. No problem there.

By the way, speaking of editors, I think any "Decent Editor" should
provide a way to display a special charactor in place of a tab, so that
I can SEE what is in the file. I havn't found a way to get XEmacs to to

> > Personally, I would prefer that future versions of Python would allow
> > ONLY tabs or ONLY spaces, but clearly there would be a major
> > disagreement about which to use.
> It would be spaces -- "4-space indents, no hard tab characters anywhere" is
> the coding standard for the Python library.  

I imagine Huaiyu, if no one else, would take issue with this.


Christopher Barker,
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