Is 'everything' a refrence or isn't it?

rurpy at rurpy at
Sun Jan 8 12:01:08 EST 2006

"Fredrik Lundh" <fredrik at> wrote:
> afaik, the Python Language Reference never defines the word "reference".
> It carefully defines words like "object" and "value", though, and terms like
> "call by object" or "call by object reference" are perfectly understandable
> if you use the words as they are defined in the language reference.

The Language Reference's definition of "value" is a non-definition.
About "value" it says that it is one of the three things an object
has.  It then says some values can change and talks about
mutable and immutable.  But we don't know what *it* is that
is mutable or immutable (other that it's called a "value" and it
is something an object "has").

Further down the page it says that container objects may have
references that are part of it's value.  Part?  Which part?  Part
of what?  Is an attribute part of a value?

I started a list of python doc problems a while ago.  Right
near the top is "object value defintion is useless".

As I've said before, the Language Reference is badly
broken and needs a major rewrite.  I don't think it should
be recommended to anyone as a source of authorative
information (except possibly for syntax since it in mostly
a Syntax Reference right now.)

[I posted another version of this yesterday from Google
but it has not appeared so...]

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