[E-Lang] get, set, and dot

zooko@mad-scientist.com zooko@mad-scientist.com
Tue, 27 Feb 2001 07:58:13 -0800

(By the way, I am contributing to this discussion, not as a language
designer, but as a language learner.  Since your stated goal is to make
the language attractive and easy for programmers to pick up, my current
level of expertise, "E novice", is a useful one for this discussion.)

 Vijay wrote:

> Anytime you can express something fairly basic in a language in a few
> different ways syntactically you got an "interoperability" problem.
> Because me and my cronies may use one of those ways, and you and yours
> might use another. Reading and understanding and communicating code
> between camps becomes that much harder --- shifting gears all the time on
> the fly is really hard to do. If you standardize on one way, then everyone
> might face some pain when they *write*, but pretty soon, everyone becomes
> familiar with it. And *reading* is much less painful.
> I'd stick with foo run(), too.

> The more you elide, the more "implicit context" you have to carry in your
> head.

Amen!  This is the fundamental difference between Perl and Python, IMO.
The rule in Perl, which appears to be apply to language syntax as well
as to everything else is "There's More Than One Way To Do It.".

The rule in Python is to provide one simple way to do each common
thing.  (Not, however, to provide a minimal number of orthogonal tools
which can be combined to do anything, a la Scheme.)

I must confess that I reacted in visible horror to the revelation in a
previous message of Tyler's that there are six different syntaces for
creating objects in E...