Is Python the Esperanto of programming languages?

Carl Banks imbosol-1048226545 at aerojockey.com
Fri Mar 21 07:34:39 CET 2003


Steven Taschuk wrote:
> Quoth Greg Ewing (using news.cis.dfn.de):
>  [...]
>> So is redundancy (at the grammatical level, at least) so
>> necessary in a natural language after all?
> 
> Clearly *some* redundancy is necessary, for error detection and
> correction purposes.

C'mon.  Nobody who utters a subject really needs a redundant verbal
ending in case the subject was uttered wrongly.

I say redundancy is not required at all for a language, and most
languages have very little of it.  Sometimes what looks like
redundancy isn't really redundancy, but rather superfluousness.  For
example, in English, if I say, "The man go to the store," no native
listener is going to wonder what I meant.  Leaving the final sibilant
off the word "go" sounds bad, but it doesn't affect the meaning of the
sentence.  It's completely superfluous.

Sometimes it is redundancy, though.  For example, someone hearing the
phrase "this heads" might wonder if the speaker meant one or many
heads.

However, even though redundant and superfluous lexemes are not
required, all natural languages have them, simply as a side effect of
language change.


-- 
CARL BANKS




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