functions, list, default parameters

Lawrence D'Oliveiro ldo at geek-central.gen.new_zealand
Thu Nov 4 08:07:31 CET 2010

In message <mailman.504.1288718704.2218.python-list at>, Robert Kern 

> On 11/2/10 2:12 AM, Lawrence D'Oliveiro wrote:
>> In message<mailman.475.1288670833.2218.python-list at>, Robert
>> Kern wrote:
>>> "Immutable objects" are just those without an obvious API for modifying
>>> them.
>> They are ones with NO legal language constructs for modifying them. Hint:
>> if a selector of some part of such an object were to occur on the LHS of
>> an assignment, and that would raise an error, then the object is
>> immutable. The interpreter already knows all this.
> Incorrect. RHS method calls can often modify objects.

So bloody what?

> Show me the algorithm that the interpreter can use to determine whether or
> not an object is mutable.

Go look in the code for the one it already uses in places where immutable 
objects are currently required.

>>> With various trickeries, I can mutate any immutable object.
>> None within the Python language itself. Which is what we’re talking about
>> here: a language construct which is probably one of the top 3 sources of
>> grief to Python newbies. And not-so-newbies.
> "import ctypes" is within the Python language.

And in the old BASIC days, we had “PEEK” and “POKE”. So by your reasoning, 
that invalidated the language rules, too.

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