What is Expressiveness in a Computer Language
cdsmith at twu.net
Sun Jun 25 20:39:52 CEST 2006
Andrew McDonagh <news at andmc.com> wrote:
> I haven't read all of this thread, I wonder, is the problem to do with
> Class being mistaken for Type? (which is usually the issue)
Not much of this thread has to do with object oriented languages... so
the word "class" would be a little out of place. However, it is true
that the word "type" is being used in the dynamically typed sense to
include classes from class-based OO languages (at least those that
include run-time type features), as well as similar concepts in other
languages. Some of us are asking for, and attempting to find, a formal
definition to justify this concept, and are so far not finding it.
Others are saying that the definition is somehow implicitly
psychological in nature, and therefore not amenable to formal
definition... which others (including myself) find rather unacceptable.
I started out insisting that "type" be used with its correct formal
definition, but I'm convinced that was a mistake. Asking someone to
change their entire terminology is unlikely to succeed. I'm now
focusing on just trying to represent the correct formal definition of
types in the first place, and make it clear when one or the other
meaning is being used.
Hopefully, that's a fair summary of the thread to date.
Chris Smith - Lead Software Developer / Technical Trainer
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