walrus with a twist :+= or ...

Avi Gross avigross at verizon.net
Wed Oct 27 20:56:59 EDT 2021

I realized that the person seeking completeness in Python may next ask why
the Walrus operator, :=, is not properly extended to include a whole
assortment of allowed assignment operators


I mean in normal python programs you are allowed to abbreviate


x = x + 5




x += 5


Similarly you have other operators like


x *= 2


And, of course, the constantly used operator:


x %= 2


So how does one extend a walrus operator if they ever decide to give in and
add it to the language just for completeness?


Sadly, a simple test shows they neglected to use a :+= operator in the


>>> (walrus := 2)


>>> walrus


>>> (wallrus :+= 2)

  File "<stdin>", line 1

    (wallrus :+= 2)


SyntaxError: invalid syntax


(Yes, I know how to spell walrus, but making a point.)


On a serious note, if it was ever considered a good idea, what would be an
acceptable sequence of symbols that might not break or confuse existing
programs and what would we call it? I mean what animal, of course.


What do these look like in some fonts? :+=   :-=   :*=   :/=   :%=  


Or do we not just add a colon in front and make it a tad different as in :=+
or :+=:   or maybe realize the futility of perfection! After all, you can
easily use some functions to get a result such as:


x := func(x, "+", 5)

x := func_add(x, 5)


or many other work-arounds.


Can we all forget I asked? I am sort of being sarcastic.


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