Compare source code

Steven D'Aprano steve-REMOVE-THIS at cybersource.com.au
Thu Nov 4 08:37:24 CET 2010


On Wed, 03 Nov 2010 23:42:55 +0000, Seebs wrote:

> No one has claimed that this is a problem *for everybody*.  Just that
> there exist real-world workflows for which it is a problem, or people
> for whom it is a problem.

And people have suggested that if your workflow leads to indentation 
being mangled and your source code no longer running, the solution is to 
change the workflow. If you can't change the workflow, you have my 
sympathy, but that's not Python's fault, and Python isn't designed for 
your use-case of web servers that convert your source code to HTML and 
text editors that mangle indentation.

Nor is Python designed for use on computers where the file system 
randomly corrupts files, or a work-flow where your Pointy-Haired boss 
keeps making random changes to production scripts in an effort to prove 
he knows best. If you have such a work-flow, don't suggest that we should 
add error-correcting codes to the language in order to fix your problem. 
We can sympathize with your troubles while still saying Not Our Problem.


> Given the
> degree to which the rest of the world has standardized on not caring how
> *much* whitespace is between things (though sometimes caring whether or
> not there's *any* whitespace between them), it seems to me that the odd
> man out is the one who is creating the burden.

What burden? You keep talking about this burden of not-having-to-type-
braces, but I don't see any burden, and nor do the majority of Python 
programmers.

What we see is dozens of languages, and thousands of people, who have 
built all these wonderful devices and tools for helping them carry a 
refrigerator on their head (a bar fridge, naturally, it would be foolish 
to carry a full-sized fridge and freezer combo). That's fine if you need 
to carry a fridge on your head, and I'm really glad that your tools take 
90% of the weight for you. I'm sure you hardly even notice it any more.

But then you start arguing that it's *really important* to carry a fridge 
on your head *everywhere* because you never know when you'll be somewhere 
where you MUST HAVE a fridge, and all hell will break loose if you don't 
have one, well, we just think you're a bit strange.

It's not that we don't think fridges are useful. And we understand the 
logic -- yes, if you need a fridge and don't have one, bad things will 
happen, but why limit it to fridges? Why not a sewing machine, and a jack 
hammer, and a piano, and ... there's no limit to the number of things you 
might need, and the difference in risk between not having any of them and 
not having any of them bar one is negligible.

And then you start telling us how we're the weird ones because we have 
the "burden" of not-carrying-a-fridge everywhere!



-- 
Steven



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