Explanation of this Python language feature? [x for x in x for x in x] (to flatten a nested list)

Steven D'Aprano steve+comp.lang.python at pearwood.info
Sat Mar 29 18:53:28 CET 2014


On Fri, 28 Mar 2014 23:40:01 -0500, Mark H Harris wrote:

> On 3/28/14 10:51 PM, Steven D'Aprano wrote:
>> You are being patronising to the 94% of the world that is not from the
>> USA. Do you honestly think that people all over the world have been
>> using computers for 30 or 40 years without any way to enter their
>> native language?
> 
> uh, pretty much.

Then be educated. That is not the case.

People have had localised code pages, and localised keyboards to enter 
characters in those code pages, for up to 30 years, if not longer.

In some of those cases, the localisation was done by companies like IBM, 
Microsoft and Apple, realising that if they wanted to sell computers 
outside of the US, they needed to supply computers that were localised to 
their market. In other cases, it was the national governments of the 
nations which set up their own standards, then insisted that computer 
vendors supported them.

This code page system actually worked pretty well, so long as you only 
exchange documents with people using the same code page. Until the 
Internet, that was mostly the case.


> That's why they called it ASCII American Standard
> Code for Information Interchange...

Yes. So what? Just because ASCII exists doesn't mean everyone uses it 
*exclusively*.

With the demise of EBCDIC as the standard character encoding (actually 
plural encodings, because EBCDIC has code pages too), ASCII has become 
the lowest common denominator for most (but not all) character sets. Pre-
Unicode, most (but definitely not all!) code pages were based on ASCII, 
either with a few changes, or extending it to a full 8 bits.

But that's the point: most people with access to computing in the first 
place, also had access to input methods and code pages for their native 
language. Your idea that they were forced to use ASCII exclusively, with 
no way of entering their own language, is simply wrong.


-- 
Steven D'Aprano
http://import-that.dreamwidth.org/



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