Summary: strong/weak typing and pointers
jeff at ccvcorp.com
Wed Nov 10 22:38:03 CET 2004
Carl Banks wrote:
>mike at hobbshouse.org (Michael Hobbs) wrote in message news:<10p1ud2juqlkb7c at corp.supernews.com>...
>>I was thinking that "rigid" would be the antonym of "fluid".
>You are correct, of course. However, I don't like "rigid" as a term
>to describe typing, for a simple reason: it's not specific enough.
>Unlike solid, rigid can easily refer not only to substances, but also
>to stances, or laws, or hierarchies, or guidelines, etc. [...]
>On the opposite end, I think I actually would prefer "liquid" to
>"fluid". Fluid would be ok; unlike with rigid, there are no fluid
>stances or fluid laws, although there are fluid guidelines. Fluid
>isn't as general in meaning as rigid is. However, the word liquid
>definitely stresses the metaphor with substances a lot better then the
>word fluid does.
On the other hand, I personally think that "rigid/fluid" make a better
metaphor specifically *because* they are not tied so much to physical
properties -- they are terms that have already been generalized as
metaphor in the much same way as is intended here. The parallel with
rigid stances, rigid hierarchies, etc, is an appropriate one -- in all
such cases, we're talking about something that resists attempts to
change its nature and/or form. Similarly, "fluid" connotes "easily
conforming to its environment", an apt description of the behavior of
objects in a language full of automatic conversions/coercions. At least
to me, the most obvious interpretation of both terms is the situation
we're discussing here
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