How clean/elegant is Python's syntax?
steve+comp.lang.python at pearwood.info
Thu May 30 21:36:29 CEST 2013
On Thu, 30 May 2013 10:12:22 -0700, rusi wrote:
> On Thu, May 30, 2013 at 9:34 AM, Ma Xiaojun <damage3025 at gmail.com>
>> Wait a minute! Isn't the most nature way of doing/thinking "generating
>> 9x9 multiplication table" two nested loop?
> Thats like saying that the most natur(al) way of using a car is to
> attach a horse to it.
> Likewise in the world of programming, 90% of programmers think
> imperative/OO programming is natural while functional programming is
> strange. Just wait 10 years and see if things are not drastically
It won't be. Functional programming goes back to Lisp, which is nearly as
old as Fortran and older than Cobol. There have been many decades for
functional languages to become mainstream, but they've never quite done
it. There's no reason to think that the next decade will see a change to
That's not to say that functional programming isn't one of the big three
programming paradigms. But it's third out of the three, and quite a bit
behind the other two:
with Logic programming a distant fourth. Well, perhaps even third, ahead
of Functional, taking into account that SQL is a form of Logic
Some modern Functional languages are really neat, like Haskell, but I
think the sad truth is that to really master them (and not just make do
with a small percentage of their functionality) is beyond 90% of
programmers. I'm not ashamed to admit that I struggle with advanced FP
But even if only a minority of programmers can master languages like
Lisp, Haskell, or Scheme, doesn't mean that *all* programmers can't learn
something from them. Functional programming is at least 50% a philosophy:
* pass arguments to functions, and return results, rather than getting
and setting state from a variable.
This is a good strategy: it makes it easier to reason about the code,
easier to document, easier to test, and makes it practical to use it in
More information about the Python-list