What is Expressiveness in a Computer Language

David Hopwood david.nospam.hopwood at blueyonder.co.uk
Thu Jun 22 01:01:36 CEST 2006

Marshall wrote:
> Chris Smith wrote:
>>Marshall <marshall.spight at gmail.com> wrote:
>>>I think what this highlights is the fact that our existing terminology
>>>is not up to the task of representing all the possible design
>>>choices we could make. Some parts of dynamic vs. static
>>>a mutually exclusive; some parts are orthogonal.
>>Really?  I can see that in a strong enough static type system, many
>>dynamic typing features would become unobservable and therefore would be
>>pragmatically excluded from any probable implementations... but I don't
>>see any other kind of mutual exclusion between the two.
> Well, it strikes me that some of what the dynamic camp likes
> is the actual *absence* of declared types, or the necessity
> of having them.

So why aren't they happy with something like, say, Alice ML, which is
statically typed, but has a "dynamic" type and type inference? I mean
this as a serious question.

> At the very least, requiring types vs. not requiring
> types is mutually exclusive.

Right, but it's pretty well established that languages that don't
require type *declarations* can still be statically typed.

David Hopwood <david.nospam.hopwood at blueyonder.co.uk>

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