Using non-ascii symbols

Steven D'Aprano steve at
Tue Jan 24 23:15:29 CET 2006

On Tue, 24 Jan 2006 15:58:35 -0600, Dave Hansen wrote:

> On Wed, 25 Jan 2006 08:26:16 +1100 in comp.lang.python, Steven
> D'Aprano <steve at> wrote:
>>On Tue, 24 Jan 2006 10:38:56 -0600, Dave Hansen wrote:
>>> The latter, IMHO.  Especially variable names.  Consider i vs. ì vs. í
>>> vs. î vs. ï vs. ...
>>Agreed, but that's the programmer's fault for choosing stupid variable
>>names. (One character names are almost always a bad idea. Names which can
>>be easily misread are always a bad idea.) Consider how easy it is to
> I wasn't necessarily expecting single-character names.  Indeed, the
> different between i and ì is easier to see than the difference
> between, say, long_variable_name and long_varìable_name.  For me,
> anyway.

Sure. But that's no worse than pxfoobrtnamer and pxfoobtrnamer.

I'm not saying that adding more characters to the mix won't increase the
opportunity to pick bad names. But this isn't a new problem, it is an old

>>shoot yourself in the foot with plain ASCII:
>>l1 = 0
>>l2 = 4
>>pages of code
>>assert 11 + l2 = 4
> You've shot yourself twice, there.

Deliberately so. The question is, in real code without the assert, should
the result of the addition be 4, 12, 15 or 23?


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