Why functional Python matters

Jack Diederich jack at performancedrivers.com
Wed Apr 16 03:54:07 CEST 2003


On Tue, Apr 15, 2003 at 11:04:06PM -0000, Dave Benjamin wrote:
> But, there is of course the risk of setting precedent that there are more
> than one ways to do it, and this is why I brought up Perl. I think that
> there is a subtle fear in the Python community of letting Python become too
> much like Perl, especially since both languages have similar application
> domains. There are other options besides TMTOWTDI and military rigor. This
> is precisely why I like Python, because it seems to be a good compromise
> between the two.

No problem, lets just yank out list comprehensions :)

list comps versus map/filter comes down to personal preference and coding 
style.  I like map & filter.

fearing TMTOWTDI is good, but python hasn't fallen down because people can
write abominations like

i = 0
sum = 0
while (i < len(mylist)):
  sum = sum + mylist[i]
  i = i + 1

at a guess most people do

sum = 0
for (guy) in mylist:
  sum += guy

or my favorite

sum = reduce(int.__add__, mylist, 0) # forget that zero at your peril

TOOWTDI when overdone makes for a bondage and discipline language.
The BDFL gets to decide the balance, sometimes with people whispering in his
ear, and sometimes with people screaming.

The ternary vote thing was more like a room full of crazy homeless people 
talking to themselves.
  
-jack





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