how to clear up a List in python?

Steve Holden steve at
Fri May 26 06:18:02 EDT 2006

vbgunz wrote:
>>I guess Fredrik's message was more along the lines of ``don't try to
>>"help" others after a week or two toying with the language because you
>>might be offering disservice, despite your good intentions; leave this
>>to more experienced users``. The words might have been a bit harsher
>>but that's just his style; you'll get used to it if you hang around
>>here often.
> I much rather stand corrected than to silently remain ignorant. I take
> revision of my solution for all it's worth but to be belittled without
> correction is arrogant and unnecessary. I've been working with Python
> for several months now and I feel I know plenty *but* I am still
> learning.
> I personally never had to clear a list. I never thought of Roberts
> answer and my reasoning is in Roberts message. In the end I stood
> correct because Robert was nice enough to answer two birds with one
> stone. Fredrik on the other hand had nothing positive to add and his
> message seemed gestapo.
> Where I come from and how I grew up is quite simple. A wrong answer is
> better than no answer and a worthless remark is worth garbage. Why?
> Because no right answer is gospel and no answer no matter how dumb is
> cause for discourtesy. I tried and thats the bottom line.
Frankly I can't agree that a wrong answer is better than no answer, 
despite my frequent strategy of opining that something is impossible 
just so the cleverer denizens of will prove me wrong. A wrong 
answer requires correction by people who know the "right" answer, so you 
end up consuming group bandwidth and mindshare unnecessarily.

I am assuming the part of  Fredrik's post that "seemed gestapo" to you 
is """if you don't know how to do things, you don't need to post."""

Please read this carefully, as Fredrik's use of language is precise: he 
doesn't say you *shouldn't* post, he says you don't *need to*. This is 
good advice, because posting a lame solution too quickly, while 
reflecting an earnest and praiseworthy desire to help, can often lead to 
trouble with some of the less patient members of our community.

You did indeed try, and I give you points for that. I'd have given you 
more points for a further response along the lines of """[Smacks head!] 
of course, my solution wasn't very clever, was it?"

Later in this thread (the time machine tells me) you go on to say:

> I bet you enjoy stealing candy from babies and dunging on the little
> guy every chance you get. You're suppose to be a role model in this
> community? Your temper tantrum and unrelenting 'look at me look at me
> i'm bigger and better' machismo attitude is nothing more than a decoyed
> ploy set out by a deluded megalomaniac. You're promoting Python or the
> fact that you're the son of Zeus and Hera? You're the worse sore losing
> cry baby I've ever witnessed on the net in my ten years here...
> pathetic for sure...

Now that's the kind of behaviour I work hard to discourage on this 
newsgroup (and everywhere else I can, come to that: you may have noticed 
  an improvement in President Bush's response to press questions about 
Iraq yesterday).

As it happens, although Fredrik and I have corresponded for almost ten 
years we have only just met this week at the Need for Speed sprint. I 
can tell you the man is a pussy cat, and any offense you might feel is 
due to your wounded pride, not his desire to hurt. So go Google for 
"egoless programming", take your knocks, and learn to simply apologise 
when you are wrong and get on with your life.

The ability to do this has stood me in good stead for many years. I am 
hoping against hope that you won't, like Oscar Wilde, feel that "The 
only thing you can possibly do with good advice is pass it on". Time 
alone will tell. A hint:

Steve Holden       +44 150 684 7255  +1 800 494 3119
Holden Web LLC/Ltd
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