For review: PEP 308 - If-then-else expression

Donn Cave donn at u.washington.edu
Tue Feb 11 20:13:47 CET 2003


Quoth "Anders J. Munch" <andersjm at dancontrol.dk>:
| "Donn Cave" <donn at u.washington.edu> wrote:
|> Quoth Erik Max Francis <max at alcyone.com>:
|>| Donn Cave wrote:
|>|> It sure doesn't bode well for what we're likely to see if one of the
|>|> proposals is accepted.  It's like handing out free spray paint on the
|>|> street corners, to improve the quality of vandalism.
|>|
|>| While that's a quaint analogy, I simply don't buy it.  How does giving
|>| someone the proper syntax they're looking for -- instead of obscure and
|>| incorrect one -- promote bad code?  Any syntax can be abused.
|> 
|> True - Perl enthusiasts have been making that point for years.  And
|> people love Perl, they're obviously getting what they want - it's like
|> they voted on features or something.
|
| I agree with your arguments but not your conclusion.  The thing is,
| conditional expressions support a functional coding style, which is a
| good thing.  Much as I love your very funny and very powerful quality
| of vandalism argument, it doesn't apply here.

Ironically, I think a functional coding style is such a good thing
that I've been working on learning Objective CAML and Haskell lately.
I think the imperative approach to programming just might be seen
by future generations like we see "goto".  I like functional programming.

But the case has been stated eloquently by others already:  we didn't
get a good language out of good features considered independently, and
we won't improve it that way.

	Donn Cave, donn at u.washington.edu




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