PEP 312 - Making lambdas implicit worries me, surely it's just the name 'lambda' that is bad...

A. Lloyd Flanagan alloydflanagan at
Tue Mar 11 15:30:52 CET 2003

Erik Max Francis <max at> wrote in message news:<3E63AFA0.A3CAC045 at>...
> Alexander Schmolck wrote:
> That Smalltalk has a particularly compact form for expressing explicit
> lazy evaluation is fine for Smalltalk.  But that has no bearing on
> whether Python should also have a compact form _for the sole purpose of
> being compact_.  Especially since getting the same effect in Python is
> so straightforward.

Part of the problem, I think, is that people coming from other
languages don't understand the power and proper use of the lambda
construct.  I also agree that lambda is a horrible keyword for it, as
it doesn't convey anything about its use to a non-Lisp/functional
language programmer.  I'll bet 95% of the programmers out there
wouldn't know a lambda form from a racing form.

One solution would be to provide a lot more documentation of lambda
and its use in different situations, preferably as part of the
tutorial.  But I also definitely think that if we can find a better
way to do lambdas we should.

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