|[11 earlier articles]|
|Re: User definable operators firstname.lastname@example.org (Nick Kramer) (1996-12-20)|
|Re: User definable operators email@example.com (1996-12-24)|
|Re: User definable operators firstname.lastname@example.org (1996-12-26)|
|Re: User definable operators email@example.com (Craig Burley) (1996-12-26)|
|Re: User definable operators firstname.lastname@example.org (1996-12-26)|
|Re: User definable operators email@example.com (Jerry Leichter) (1996-12-27)|
|Re: User definable operators firstname.lastname@example.org (1996-12-28)|
|Re: User definable operators WStreett@shell.monmouth.com (1996-12-29)|
|Re: User definable operators email@example.com (1997-01-02)|
|Re: User definable operators firstname.lastname@example.org (1997-01-02)|
|Re: User definable operators email@example.com (Dr A. N. Walker) (1997-01-03)|
|Re: User definable operators WStreett@shell.monmouth.com (1997-01-03)|
|Re: User definable operators firstname.lastname@example.org (1997-01-07)|
|[2 later articles]|
|From:||email@example.com (Gene Wirchenko)|
|Date:||28 Dec 1996 17:26:08 -0500|
|Organization:||MIND LINK! - British Columbia, Canada|
|References:||96-12-088 96-12-110 96-12-147 96-12-163|
firstname.lastname@example.org (Herman Rubin) wrote:
>>Mathematical symbolism has as many nasty historical features as most
>>old software programs, unfortunately.
>But mathematics has never refuse to allow new operators, or new
>notation. It sometimes has been slow to adopt them.
This has happened with programming languages, too. Before you
get too down on programming languages, how long was it before zero got
into mathematical notation?
>One would think that language designers would have learned from this,
>and gone in the direction of greater versatility, not less. Of
>course, it is necessary to have a lot more characters than the 95,
>including space, allowed by ASCII.
What do you mean by greater versatility? I can define functions
of my own in pretty much any non-toy programming language. That does
the trick nicely for me.
The languages which include the kitchen sink get in the way of
doing things. It isn't enough to learn a few features to use the
language; one also has to worry about how these interact with other
causes (or at least used to) fixed overflow due to the way PL/I does
When trimming my toenails, I prefer to use a nail clipper instead
of a rifle.
>Notation has to be overloaded to be of reasonable length. By the time
>one reads the lengthy variable names which seem to delight the
>computer people, the structure of the expression is lost. It is
>necessary to let the user invent notation, if necessary, and for the
>language and compiler to help, not hinder.
Interesting. When I try to read a text where the author has
dived into mathematical notation, I have a very difficult time as I
generally don't have the background for what the "funny little
letters" mean. Because programs are a lot more arbitrary as to what
meaning can be attached to a symbol, the long names help enormously.
If you want to use short variable names, that's up to you, but you had
better document your code very well indeed.
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