PEP8 and 4 spaces

Paul Sokolovsky pmiscml at
Thu Jul 3 20:07:28 CEST 2014


On Fri, 4 Jul 2014 03:38:27 +1000
Chris Angelico <rosuav at> wrote:

> On Fri, Jul 4, 2014 at 3:31 AM, Tobiah <tshepard at> wrote:
> > Coworker takes PEP8 as gospel and uses 4 spaces
> > to indent.  I prefer tabs.  Boss want's us to
> > unify.
> 1) PEP 8 is meant to be guidelines, *not* a set of hard-and-fast
> rules. 
> 2) Tabs let different people display the indents at different
> widths. 

That's exactly the problem with tabs - whatever you think your code
looks like with tabs, other people will see quite different picture.

Also, most people are not interested in doing mumbo-jumbo with tabs
settings, and have them set to standard 8-char tabs. So, any python
code which uses only tabs for indentation automatically violates
4-space convention (and mixing tabs and spaces is nowadays prohibited
in Python).

Summing up: if you care about other human beings, use spaces. If you
don't care about other human beings, you may use tabs, but other human
beings surely will take how you treat them into account ;-).

Best regards,
 Paul                          mailto:pmiscml at

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