python simply not scaleable enough for google?

Alf P. Steinbach alfps at
Sat Nov 14 11:30:36 CET 2009

* Vincent Manis:
> On 2009-11-14, at 01:11, Alf P. Steinbach wrote:
>>> OK, now we've reached a total breakdown in communication, Alf. You appear
>>> to take exception to distinguishing between a language and its implementation.
>> Not at all.
>> But that doesn't mean that making that distinction is always meaningful.
> It certainly is. A language is a (normally) infinite set of strings with a way of ascribing 
> a meaning to each string. 
> A language implementation is a computer program of some sort, which is a finite set of bits 
> representing a program in some language, with the effect that the observed behavior of the 
> implementation is that strings in the language are accepted, and the computer performs the 
> operations defined by the semantics. 
> These are always different things. 

Well, there you have it, your basic misconception.

Sometimes, when that's practically meaningful, people use the name of a language 
to refer to both, as whoever it was did up-thread.

Or, they might mean just the latter. :-)

Apply some intelligence and it's all clear.

Stick boneheadedly to preconceived distinctions and absolute context independent 
meanings, and statements using other meanings appear to be meaningless or very 


Cheers & hth.,

- Alf

PS: You might, or might not, benefit from looking up Usenet discussions on the 
meaning of "character code", which is classic case of the confusion you have 
here. There's even a discussion of that in some RFC somewhere, I think it was 
MIME-related. Terms mean different things in different *contexts*.

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