A Bug By Any Other Name ...

J. Cliff Dyer jcd at sdf.lonestar.org
Mon Aug 3 16:54:05 CEST 2009

On Sun, 2009-08-02 at 14:14 +0000, Albert van der Horst wrote:
> >This is actually quite thoroughly untrue.  In python, *indentation*
> is
> >significant.  Whitespace (internal to a line) is not.  You can even
> call
> >methods like this if you want:
> You totally don't get it. You describe how python is now.
> I propose a change to be made to python. Small wonder that that is
> different from what it is now.
> >
> >>>> s = 'abc'
> >>>> s        .     upper()
> >ABC
> You prove nothing by giving examples.
> You can disprove by giving one counter example,
> here it goes.
> Whitespace (internal to a line) is significant.
> In Python you cannot change
>       xleftgoing = 123000000
> to
>         x left going = 123 000 000
> (You can in Algol68)

I had a feeling that counterexample would be coming sooner or later.
However, it doesn't really address the change you're looking for.
Internal whitespace *is* irrelevant, except insofar as it can be used to
delimit different tokens in parsing.  If tokens are separate, they are
separate, and no more or less whitespace is going to make any

Again, I'm describing how python is now.  Which is not to say it
couldn't be changed, I just want to make sure you understand how deep
into the heart of python you are trying to cut.  You make it sound like
a small change, but it is not.  You are proposing changing the parsing
rules, which completely changes the scope of what is possible and what
isn't with python syntax.  All to solve a problem that, so far, hasn't
been proven to exist in anything other than a speculative way.

You're trying to turn an ocean liner around because you left your
sunscreen on the dock.


More information about the Python-list mailing list