Is this pylint error message valid or silly?

Rhodri James rhodri at wildebst.demon.co.uk
Fri Jun 19 15:53:57 CEST 2009


On Fri, 19 Jun 2009 14:36:01 +0100, Matthew Wilson <matt at tplus1.com> wrote:

> On Fri 19 Jun 2009 02:55:52 AM EDT, Terry Reedy wrote:
>>>         if c == "today":
>>>                     c = datetime.today()
>>
>> Now I guess that you actually intend c to be passed as a datetime
>> object. You only used the string as a type annotation, not as a real
>> default value. Something like 'record_date = None' is better.
>
> Thanks for the feedback.  I think I should have used a more obvious
> string in my original example and a more descriptive parameter name.
>
> So, pretend that instead of
>
>     c="today"
>
> I wrote
>
>     record_date="defaults to today's date".
>
> I know my way is unorthodox, but I think it is a little bit more obvious
> to the reader than
>
>     record_date=None
>
> The None is a signal to use a default value, but that is only apparent
> after reading the code.

It's a very common idiom, however, and in addition

    record_data is None

is a cheap test, while

    record_data == "defaults to today's date"

is an expensive test as well as easy to mistype.

-- 
Rhodri James *-* Wildebeest Herder to the Masses



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