Idioms and Anti-Idioms Question

Gabriel Genellina gagsl-py2 at
Tue Jun 23 11:24:03 EDT 2009

En Mon, 22 Jun 2009 20:34:40 -0300, Miles Kaufmann <milesck at>  
> On Jun 22, 2009, at 12:14 AM, Ben Charrow wrote:
>> What is subtly wrong about this piece of code?  I can't see any bugs  
>> and can't think of subtle gotchas (e.g. the '\' is removed or the lines  
>> become separated, because in both cases an IndentationError would be  
>> raised).
> Perhaps, along with one of those gotchas, a mix of tabs and spaces are  
> used such that the second line only _appears_ to have a different level  
> of indentation? ;)

Neither. As back in time as I can go (Python 1.5), having any character  
after the backslash has always been a syntax error no matter what. Only  
the error message has changed:

   File "", line 18
     value =['first'][0]*baz.quux(1, 2)[5:9] \
SyntaxError: invalid token

So the "it might be subtly wrong" argument is strongly wrong.

Gabriel Genellina

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