New to Python - block grouping (spaces)

Rustom Mody rustompmody at
Mon Apr 20 05:28:04 CEST 2015

On Monday, April 20, 2015 at 8:34:12 AM UTC+5:30, Chris Angelico wrote:
> On Mon, Apr 20, 2015 at 12:43 PM, Rustom Mody  wrote:
> > The key thing to make this work is that the tab needs to be a reasonably solid
> > non-leaky abstraction for denoting an indent.
> > As soon as you allow both tabs and spaces all the interminable bikeshedding starts
> >
> Whatever you change, there will be stuff for people to argue about.
> Trust me, that's nothing to do with the nature of programming
> languages... it's about the nature of people.
> > In many ways this is like the browser wars.
> > If browsers had been made like half-decent compilers then non-compliant html
> > wouldn't render and would get corrected on short order.
> > Instead browsers overreach themselves to be nice (to users) and end up being
> > horrible to web-developers who now need to maintain 1 dozen browsers × 2 dozen versions.
> >
> > Likewise all the overreaching to be allow 'free-form' layout puts paid to all
> > attempts at richer structure comprehending tools.
> > As a quick example try this:
> > You've a 10-file python project in which you want to replace function 'f'
> > by function 'longname'
> > How easy is it?
> >
> > I am ready to bet that if you use IE-ish its easy if you use classic editors
> > not so.
> If you have a ten-file project that's identifying a key function
> globally as 'f', then you already have a problem. If your names are
> more useful and informative, a global search-and-replace will do the
> job.

Are you sure your global search-and-replace will do a proper job inside
strings and comments?

> What's your point, though?


Nnotions like identifier (and dozens of others) are straightforwardly
present and available inside the python implementation.
However the language implementation is a hard-n-high silo
For the programmer accessing the language through an editor these notions are
not available unless hi-power explosives are used to punch holes in the silo
-- eg open Cpython sources.

The Smalltalks and Lisps organized the world differently -- the programmer was
inside the silo with the corresponding advantages of power and disadvantages of

I (and I guess BartC) like to dream of a Utopia that is powerful and free

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