[REBOL] Re: zero based indexing
From: joel:neely:fedex at: 6-Jul-2001 12:01
Cal Dixon wrote:
> ... why not just create a set of new functions ... and you
> can just use those instead of pick/at/poke/index? ...
> what would an internal change to rebol do for us that this
> doesn't? (other than the improved speed by making these
> native! functions)
It wouldn't have to be an "internal change". As you implied, it
would be quite satisfactory simply to have an alternative set
of functions in addition to the ones currently available.
However, because access to structures is so fundamental to
(and pervasive in) programs that make non-trivial use of those
structures, there could be a *substantial* performance penalty
to writing and using mezzanine-like wrappers whose main
raison-d'etre was adding or subtracting one. If RT were to offer
these capabilities without performance penalty (e.g. as additional
natives) that would solve the problem nicely.
As for the agonizing length (and temperature) of the discussion,
I must confess my own measure of bafflement.
My experience in dealing with technology vendors goes back to
the early 70's, when I was a subgroup officer in CUBE, the
international users' group for Burroughs computers. We (the
users' group as a whole) had very good experience with the kind
of dialog in which we explained our problems, limitations, or
difficulties, and the appropriate technical and/or product
management folks would respond with suggested work-arounds or
descriptions of new features which they would implement to
These dialogs took place on a regularly-scheduled basis, and
were taken seriously by all parties. (Since this was before
the wide-spread availability of the Internet, the process
took place via meetings scheduled every 6 months. ;-)
It was quite common for Burroughs to provide better (faster,
more efficient, more elegant, etc.) solutions than those
originally proposed or suggested by the users. All in all,
the process was highly satisfactory.
The purpose of computing is insight, not numbers!
- R. W. Hamming