map/filter/reduce/lambda opinions and background unscientificmini-survey

Peter Hansen peter at
Sun Jul 3 20:43:14 CEST 2005

Steven D'Aprano wrote:
> Frankly, I find this entire discussion very surreal. Reduce etc *work*,
> right now. They have worked for years. If people don't like them, nobody
> is forcing them to use them. Python is being pushed into directions which
> are *far* harder to understand than map and reduce (currying, decorators,
> etc) and people don't complain about those. 

I find it surreal too, for a different reason.

Python *works*, right now.  It has worked for years.  If people don't 
like the direction it's going, nobody is forcing them to upgrade to the 
new version (which is not imminent anyway).

In the unlikely event that the latest and greatest Python in, what, five 
years or more?, is so alien that one can't handle it, one has the right 
to fork Python and maintain a tried-and-true-and-still-including-reduce- 
-filter-and-map version of it, or even just to stick with the most 
recent version which still has those features.  And that's assuming it's 
not acceptable (for whatever bizarre reason I can't imagine) to use the 
inevitable third-party extension that will provide them anyway.

I wonder if some of those who seem most concerned are actually more 
worried about losing the free support of a team of expert developers as 
those developers evolve their vision of the language, than about losing 
access to something as minor as reduce().


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