Case sensitivity

Mark Charsley mark.charsley at
Mon Feb 24 11:21:00 CET 2003

In article <D%r5a.212131$0v.5936105 at>, aleax at (Alex 
Martelli) wrote:

Really, case sensitivity
> gives no substantial added-value, it's just a small but
> negative impact on programmer productivity.  Pity.  It
> won't go away, so it's silly to keep debating it uselessly.
> But let's not kid ourselves that it's a GOOD thing, pls.

If you ever want to program in languages other than english then imposing 
case-insensitivity has major drawbacks. At least with english in ASCII, 
case-insensitivity can be implemented by masking off one bit in the 

In some languages, upper case is a word-sensitive operation, not a 
character-sensitive: i.e. which (and, in extreme cases, how many) 
character(s) to replace the lower-case character can depend on which 
characters are next to the lower-case character and/or which word the 
character is in (for examples, google comp.lang.c++.moderated for 
discussions on why there's no standard functions for case conversion). 
Which would make case-insensitive matching really rather slow. 

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