slow loop?

maney at maney at
Fri Jan 17 05:13:51 CET 2003

Peter Hansen <peter at> wrote:
> maney at wrote:
>> Interesting.  Because mmost of what I'm parsing comes from Excel

> You just happen to be parsing data which has no embedded newlines in

I'm sure that's the case.  In fact, now that I think about it, one of
the more annoying spreadsheets (which is, alas, the only
machine-readable source that relates various data to each other (yes,
trying to improve the data systems in the office is on my long-term
plan list... somewhere)) often has a great mass of spaces between
certain parts of the data.  I guess I should be glad I'm not dealing
with more sophisticated users who might know the alt-enter thing.  :-/

>> That's me.  Why, I invented "do the simplest thing" *decades* before
>> those gen-X folks came along!  <really big grin>
> So where were you all those years when I needed that?! :-)

Going through my "complications are *fun*" phase, I suppose.  You know,
the C++ years.

(Though, seriously, C++ as it was back in the Cfront days offered a lot
to make C a nicer language - and without templates and exceptions it
was actually implementable.  It wasn't ideal, but it certainly was a
step up from C.  As Knuth didn't say, but perhaps ought to have,
premature standardization is almost as bad as premature optimization.)

(Another serious digression.  I am finally doing more than skimming
hype and fluffy articles about XP, reading _Questioning XP_, and one
thing that's striking me is how many of the core practices really are
things I used to do, somewhat, and have lately found myself doing much
more consistently while working with Python - the small increment of
change / test / next increment cycle in particular benefits, of course,
from the fast turnaround (no compile/link step).  Then there are the
things that I wish someone had forcefully made me aware of about twenty
years ago, when it might have saved the project.  <sigh>)

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