What is Expressiveness in a Computer Language

Pascal Costanza pc at p-cos.net
Fri Jun 16 16:48:28 CEST 2006

Torben Ægidius Mogensen wrote:
> Pascal Costanza <pc at p-cos.net> writes:
>> Torben Ægidius Mogensen wrote:
>>> So while it may take longer to get a program that gets
>>> past the compiler, it takes less time to get a program that works.
>> That's incorrect. See http://haskell.org/papers/NSWC/jfp.ps -
>> especially Figure 3.
> There are many other differences between these languages than static
> vs. dynamic types, and some of these differences are likely to be more
> significant.  What you need to test is langauges with similar features
> and syntax, except one is statically typed and the other dynamically
> typed.
> And since these languages would be quite similar, you can use the same
> test persons: First let one half solve a problem in the statically
> typed language and the other half the same problem in the dynamically
> typed language, then swap for the next problem.  If you let a dozen
> persons each solve half a dozen problems, half in the statically typed
> language and half in the dynamically typed language (using different
> splits for each problem), you might get a useful figure.

...and until then claims about the influence of static type systems on 
the speed with which you can implement working programs are purely 
guesswork. That's the only point I need to make to show that your 
original unqualified statement, namely that it takes less time to get a 
program that works, is incorrect.


3rd European Lisp Workshop
July 3 - Nantes, France - co-located with ECOOP 2006

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