Lisp-likeness

Kay Schluehr kay.schluehr at gmx.net
Tue Mar 15 09:43:49 CET 2005


Maybe You can answer my question what this simple LISP function does ?

(defun addn (n)
	  #'(lambda (x)
	      (+ x n)))

This is correct LISP-syntax if You bear in mind LISPs powerwull macro
language...

I think Guido and python-dev are very carefull in adding new power to
Python. They have to balance the needs for powerfull language features
on the one hand, simplicity on the other hand. That this relation
drifts towards more power and more complexity since Python 2.2. is a
correct observation, but You probably may have notized that the number
of large projects using Python as their primal language is growing. The
boundary between that what was formerly called "systems programming"
and "scripting" is blurred ( if Your mindset reduces
"systems-programming" on the availability of pointers You certainly
don't have any problems with the common public prejudices ).

> The real problem with Python is that it has been very successful as a
> scripting language in the static-typing/C/C++ world. Those
> programmers, instead of adapting their evil ways to Python, and
> realizing the advantages of a dynamic language, are influencing
> Python's design and forcing it into the static-typing mold. Python is
> going the C++ way: piling feature upon feature, adding bells and
> whistles while ignoring or damaging its core design.

Maybe You should explain what You regard as Pythons "core design", what
belongs to the core and what to the periphery? Otherwise Your statement
seems to be plain emotional.

> The new 'perlified' syntax for decorators, the new static type bonds
> and the weird decision to kill lambda instead of fixing it are good
> examples that show that Python is going the wrong way.

My hypothesis about lambda: lambda will be trashed because it is an
alien in the language. It is impure. Trashing it is an expression of
Pythons rassism. There is no way of "doing it right" without exceeding
it's power and making it  less controlable. When Guido once stated that
the generator way of doing things is Pythons future it was also a
renouncement of lambda. Compared with this ideological orientation the
introduction of the @-syntax is a minor sacrilege on syntax esthetics -
though this special character may hurd the souls of the believers more
that everything else introduced into the language.

Kay




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