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Re: [eiffel_software] Relax constraint for extra comma

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  • Ian Joyner
    The Crockford videos I mentioned talk about why programming is a bad place and the intransigence of programmers to accept better ideas. Real lesson in it for
    Message 1 of 17 , Mar 31, 2012
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      The Crockford videos I mentioned talk about why programming is a bad place and the intransigence of programmers to accept better ideas. Real lesson in it for why Eiffel is not more popular.

      Crockford also has a book JavaScript the good parts:

      http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0026OR2ZY/ref=s9_simh_gw_p351_d1_g351_i1?pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_s=center-2&pf_rd_r=1QY1YM2DGZ4M85N1HEPH&pf_rd_t=101&pf_rd_p=470938631&pf_rd_i=507846

      but he also warns about the bad parts, and his reason why so many bad parts get into languages like JavaScript (and C and C++) is due to good intentions. The intention is to save the programmer just a little work, saving a keystroke here and there, but reducing lack of precision and introducing all sorts of other problems. The ++ operator itself is one of the worst he says (and then, he says, a language was named celebrating it!) In Doug's assessment it saves one keystroke. Some good intention! In return you get side effects in single statements and code that is difficult to reason about.

      So many of these good intentions are then used by 'clever' programmers who think they have got it by learning some little good-intention feature of the language.

      A superfluous comma sounds like another good intention. Maybe that's the problem with Eiffel – it is a language without good intentions!

      Ian

      On 1 Apr 2012, at 00:10, Peter Gummer wrote:

      > Berend de Boer wrote:
      >
      >> If you never edit code, you won't need this option. I.e. when you
      >> write everything perfect from scratch, why would you use this?
      >>
      >> But if you maintain code, it just handy to have, it's harmless ...
      >
      > It's harmful to the legibility of the code.
      >
      > Legibility is crucial to maintainability.
      >
      >
      >> And you don't have to use it!
      >
      > Ah, the good old "you don't have to use it" argument!
      >
      > Other programming languages have many features that I never use (e.g., overloading). I often hear "You don't have to use it" in defence of those features. This no defence at all. The very presence of those features in the language means that I have to be constantly beware that some _other_ programmer might have used them.
      >
      > I'm actually perfectly happy to program in many languages other than Eiffel, as long as I'm programming on my own, because I know that the code I'm working with never uses overloads, never returns from the middle of routines, etc., etc. etc. Where those other languages become a problem to me is when I work with other programmers, because they may (and often do) use those features that I consider harmful.
      >
      > That's the number one reason why I would rather program in Eiffel than in any other language: the absence of so many harmful features. (Well, maybe it's my number 2 reason; DbC would be my number 1.)
      >
      > The odd trailing comma would be much less harmful than overloading, etc., so I wouldn't consider what you've asked for to be the end of the world, but I'd be irritated whenever I encountered sloppy code like that.
      >
      > - Peter Gummer
      >
      > ------------------------------------
      >
      > Yahoo! Groups Links
      >
      >
      >
    • dwilliams@dek.com
      Please don t mess with the comma. It s fine just as it is. Readability is what matters. David Williams Software Team Leader & Intellectual Property Manager
      Message 2 of 17 , Apr 2 2:40 AM
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        Please don't mess with the comma. It's fine just as it is. Readability is
        what matters.

        David Williams
        Software Team Leader & Intellectual Property Manager
        email: dwilliams@...
        tel: +44 1305 208341



        From: Ian Joyner <i.joyner@...>
        To: eiffel_software@yahoogroups.com
        Date: 01/04/2012 01:24
        Subject: Re: [eiffel_software] Relax constraint for extra comma
        Sent by: eiffel_software@yahoogroups.com



        The Crockford videos I mentioned talk about why programming is a bad place
        and the intransigence of programmers to accept better ideas. Real lesson in
        it for why Eiffel is not more popular.

        Crockford also has a book JavaScript the good parts:

        http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0026OR2ZY/ref=s9_simh_gw_p351_d1_g351_i1?pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_s=center-2&pf_rd_r=1QY1YM2DGZ4M85N1HEPH&pf_rd_t=101&pf_rd_p=470938631&pf_rd_i=507846


        but he also warns about the bad parts, and his reason why so many bad parts
        get into languages like JavaScript (and C and C++) is due to good
        intentions. The intention is to save the programmer just a little work,
        saving a keystroke here and there, but reducing lack of precision and
        introducing all sorts of other problems. The ++ operator itself is one of
        the worst he says (and then, he says, a language was named celebrating it!)
        In Doug's assessment it saves one keystroke. Some good intention! In return
        you get side effects in single statements and code that is difficult to
        reason about.

        So many of these good intentions are then used by 'clever' programmers who
        think they have got it by learning some little good-intention feature of
        the language.

        A superfluous comma sounds like another good intention. Maybe that's the
        problem with Eiffel – it is a language without good intentions!

        Ian

        On 1 Apr 2012, at 00:10, Peter Gummer wrote:

        > Berend de Boer wrote:
        >
        >> If you never edit code, you won't need this option. I.e. when you
        >> write everything perfect from scratch, why would you use this?
        >>
        >> But if you maintain code, it just handy to have, it's harmless ...
        >
        > It's harmful to the legibility of the code.
        >
        > Legibility is crucial to maintainability.
        >
        >
        >> And you don't have to use it!
        >
        > Ah, the good old "you don't have to use it" argument!
        >
        > Other programming languages have many features that I never use (e.g.,
        overloading). I often hear "You don't have to use it" in defence of those
        features. This no defence at all. The very presence of those features in
        the language means that I have to be constantly beware that some _other_
        programmer might have used them.
        >
        > I'm actually perfectly happy to program in many languages other than
        Eiffel, as long as I'm programming on my own, because I know that the code
        I'm working with never uses overloads, never returns from the middle of
        routines, etc., etc. etc. Where those other languages become a problem to
        me is when I work with other programmers, because they may (and often do)
        use those features that I consider harmful.
        >
        > That's the number one reason why I would rather program in Eiffel than in
        any other language: the absence of so many harmful features. (Well, maybe
        it's my number 2 reason; DbC would be my number 1.)
        >
        > The odd trailing comma would be much less harmful than overloading, etc.,
        so I wouldn't consider what you've asked for to be the end of the world,
        but I'd be irritated whenever I encountered sloppy code like that.
        >
        > - Peter Gummer
        >
        > ------------------------------------
        >
        > Yahoo! Groups Links
        >
        >
        >



        ------------------------------------

        Yahoo! Groups Links




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