[Tutor] Re: Example source code..

Tesla Coil tescoil@irtc.net
Sat, 06 Jan 2001 13:47:40 -0600

On 05 Jan 2001, R. A. wrote:
> 3) We could devise some way to implement a comment system
> on the site so viewers could add their own two cents' worth.

That would be essential.  Peer review would be major motive
to post.  You want people to be able to say "here's a different
implementation of the same thing," or "wow, that one function
you've got there is simply Not Of This Earth."

But regarding it all as unimportant source, a web comment
board tends to grace an inital post with the false value of
Definitive Unimportant Version, while a mailing list presents
any followup as The Last Word For The Moment Anyway.  From
a subscriber's perspective, a list suggests, like Alan Perlis,
"is it possible that software is not like anything else, that it
is meant to be discarded:  that the whole point is to see it as
a soap bubble?"  Subscribers can preserve what soap bubbles
particularly interest them, and still consult the archive for
what may have floated past earlier.

Another advantage to a list over a web comment board is that
participants in the latter may cease to contribute for no other
reason than that they wandered off and kinda forgot it existed.
Enough forgetting, and you don't even have the fortnightly new
additions bulletin John suggested to remind people.  A mailing
list can go quiet for a while, but any single member deciding to
post reminds everyone that it's still there, and among those will
be persons to whom it then occurs, "oh yeah, I oughta post that
one script I wrote a couple days ago."

Whatever form it takes, occasionally someone posts to Tutor
and says "I'm starting out with Python and need suggestions
on programs to write for exercise."  It wouldn't be a bad idea
to have a web page collect proposals for unimportant Python
programs.  You'd still want this to be on a web page if the 
project were undertaken as a list, so it wouldn't become the
"someone do my homework for me" request line.