PEP 318: Can't we all just get along?

Michael J. Fromberger Michael.J.Fromberger at Clothing.Dartmouth.EDU
Thu Aug 19 20:01:01 CEST 2004

In article <10i9msuatli5p84 at>,
 "John Roth" <newsgroups at> wrote:

> "Kevin Smith" <Kevin.Smith at> wrote in message
> news:20040817181725194-0400 at
> > For what it's worth, I wrote the original PEP 318.  [...]
> > 
> > In my opinion, none of the proposed syntaxes really seem Pythonic.  
> > This PEP just seems to be trying to solve too many problems.
> The arguement is, and always has been, about syntax. Everyone agrees 
> that the current situation is not ideal; putting the wrapping 
> assignment statement after the method is a very poor way of declaring 
> intent.

I agree that the current situation is not ideal.  However, I would also 
argue that many of the proposed replacements are even worse.  Kevin 
Smith's latest proposal (cf. <>) is, in 
my view, the most reasonable suggestion so far.

> In other words, forget the use cases.  They're irrelevant. 

On this point, I strongly disagree.  If you don't have a use case, there 
is no point whatsoever in arguing about the syntax of a feature.

Now, if you want to argue about general syntactic design principles, 
maybe that is an interesting topic -- but it is one level removed from 
what PEP-318 is all about, and therefore (in my opinion) not really 
germane to the present discussion.


Michael J. Fromberger             | Lecturer, Dept. of Computer Science  | Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH, USA

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