[XML-SIG] Ugh! Why are DOM access methods spelled with a leading '_'?

Jim Fulton jim@digicool.com
Fri, 23 Jun 2000 16:35:47 -0400

"Fred L. Drake, Jr." wrote:
> Jim Fulton writes:
>  > Traditionally, Python attributes (including methods) with
>  > names starting with '_' were treated as private.
>   Yes, and this works well.
>  > Why oh why then does the Python DOM implementation use
>  > method names beginning with '_'s in the public API (for
>  > getting attributes), as in '_get_nodeType'? Why not
>  > 'get_nodeType' or 'getNodeType'? Is the intent that these
>  > functions shouldn't be called by Python code?
>   This is a function of the CORBA IDL mapping; DOM is specified in
> IDL.  I've looked at this and, however unfortunate, there are very
> good reasons for using the underscore in this way with the mapping.
> The names of the get and set methods must not map onto normal IDL
> identifiers, which can't start with an underscore.

Are you saying that there is a danger that there
might be an interface with an attribute 'foo' and
a method 'get_foo' (or 'getFoo' or whatever)? I believe
that other language mappings don't worry about this.
For example, the C++ mapping uses 'get_foo'.

>  > Is there are description somewhere of the Python DOM mapping,
>  > other than the DOM sources?
>   The W3C documentation gives the IDL mapping, which requires the
> Python specific mapping.

I agree. IMO, the Python IDL mapping is broken. :(


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