Clarity vs. code reuse/generality

Jean-Michel Pichavant jeanmichel at
Tue Jul 7 08:51:10 EDT 2009

Steven D'Aprano wrote:
> On Tue, 07 Jul 2009 05:13:28 +0000, Lie Ryan wrote:
>> When people are fighting over things like `sense`, although sense may
>> not be strictly wrong dictionary-wise, it smells of something burning...
> That would be my patience.
> I can't believe the direction this discussion has taken. Anybody sensible 
> would be saying "Oh wow, I've just learned a new meaning to the word, 
> that's great, I'm now less ignorant than I was a minute ago". But oh no, 
> we mustn't use a standard meaning to a word, heaven forbid we disturb 
> people's ignorance by teaching them something new.
> It's as simple as this: using `sense` as a variable name to record the 
> sense of a function is not a code smell, any more than using `flag` to 
> record a flag would be, or `sign` to record the sign of an object. If you 
> don't know the appropriate meanings of the words sense, flag or sign, 
> learn them, don't dumb down my language.

Can't we just calm down ? I'm really sorry my ignorance started this 
thread, and my apologies go to Kj who's obviously more fluent in english 
than me.
I've never used sense in that way before, nor I've seen used by others 
until now. However Kj is right, and my dictionary seems wrong 
( I've searched through others dictionaries and find 
out this is actually applicable to functions. My bad.


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