using "private" parameters as static storage?

Joe Strout joe at
Fri Nov 14 03:16:25 CET 2008

On Nov 13, 2008, at 10:19 AM, Chris Mellon wrote:

> Static storage is a way of preserving state. Objects are a way of
> encapsulating state and behavior. Use an object.

Argh.  I've been back in the Python community for about a month, and  
I've been continually amazed at how every single "how do I do X" or  
"what do you think of this method of doing X" question is answered by  
people on high horses claiming "you shouldn't do X".

I know very well about state and objects.  I'll be happy to whip out  
my software engineering credentials and measure them against yours if  
that's how you like to play.  I understand very well when data should  
be stored as instance data, and when it should be instead tucked away  
as static data within a method.  If you don't understand that, or are  
happy without having the choice, and have no answer to the question I  
was asking, then that's fine.  I don't always have anything useful to  
contribute when somebody asks a question either.  But in that case, I  
resist the urge to reply anyway.

Maybe we should define some standard tags people could add to the top  
of their email: "Helpful-Answer" for helpful answers, and "Unhelpful- 
Preaching" for the other kind.  Then those of us not interested in one  
sort or the other could set up an email filter.

- Joe

P.S. I'm sorry, Chris, I don't mean to rip your head off in  
particular.  You were just the straw that broke the camels back; there  
have been plenty of others adding to the frustration.  I'll try to  
just ignore such responses in the future... though it is a little  
disturbing to think how many newbies are probably driven away by this  
sort of thing.

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