Re: python strings

Tim Peters (
Tue, 26 Apr 94 22:34:41 -0400

> [mark]
> ...
> Is it just me, or does it seem that Python's in danger of losing
> some of its simplicity? I always thought that was one of its best
> features.
> ... [remainder deleted cuz you can read the original; the quotes
> are here just to jog your memory]
> the utility of a prototyping tool really is directly proportional to
> its ease-of-use, and hence its simplicity.

OK, I've been silent long enough <snort>: ease-of-use is about the only
thing that drives me, but "ease" cuts across the whole software lifecycle
and isn't easy to pin down.

Still, under that mercifully vague notion of ease-of-use, triple-quoted
strings (or a moral equivalent) are a great feature, and make both
string-literal catenation-implied-by-juxtaposition, and backslash string
catenation, into gratuitous duplications of functionality, with potential
for confusing interactions. Jim seems to claim somewhat the reverse, but
hasn't posted an example to back it up (& I haven't been able to
construct one for him <0.9 grin>).

OTOH, Guido seems to be taking the unusual (for him) position that "ease
of use" is inversely proportional to the number of lines of tokenizer.c
that have to be changed. So (a) if it can't be solved with a 10-line
hack, it's not worth solving no matter what it is; and (b) if something
_can_ be done with a 10-line hack, it's certainly worth doing no matter
what it is. I'm sure you'll agree this is a fair summary of everyone's
position <cackle>.

simplicity's-a-good-thing-in-moderation-ly y'rs - tim

Tim Peters
not speaking for Kendall Square Research Corp