Question mark in variable and function names
Michael J. Fromberger
Michael.J.Fromberger at Clothing.Dartmouth.EDU
Wed Oct 6 22:30:31 CEST 2004
In article <1gl90yk.v91yz8w1z0b2N%aleaxit at yahoo.com>,
aleaxit at yahoo.com (Alex Martelli) wrote:
> Andr? N?ss <andre.naess at gmail.com> wrote:
> > One thing I liked about Lisp was the ability to use the question mark
> > (and the exclamation mark) in function names. [...]
> Even though I haven't used Lisp extensively, I agree with you. [...]
> ops which modify their arguments with a trailing bang, IS a great idea
> for readability. [...]
> Ruby has this convention and it seems to work wonderfully well for them.
> I wish Python could grow it, too, but I don't think I stand any chance
> of convincing Guido -- perhaps somebody else can.
I also like this convention in Scheme, but I don't like the way it looks
in an infix-laden language like Python.
(predicate? arg1 arg2 ... argn)
... looks good and legible to me, I find:
predicate?(arg1, arg2, ..., argn)
... far less appealing, because of the juxtaposition of ?(.
I realize this is purely a personal aesthetic distaste, but Python is
generally quite a pretty language, and I'm afraid this addition, as
sensible as it is, might work against that for comparatively little
Michael J. Fromberger | Lecturer, Dept. of Computer Science
http://www.dartmouth.edu/~sting/ | Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH, USA
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