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[REBOL] Re: Correct Behaviour? R.I.P.

From: jeff:rebol at: 5-Jul-2001 17:12

Howdy howdy, Joel:
> But if this thread has gotten to the point where we're > dealing in highly distorted exaggerations, put-down > references to "academic correctness" or "those of the > REDESIGN REBOL mindset", and appeals to rock and roll as > replacements for sincere (and vigorous and humorous, too!) > discussion of how to write better code in the real world, > then I have to say that it's passed the point of > diminishing returns for me.
My exaggerations are never distorted. :-) And my bringing up Rock and Roll was not a replacement for vigorous and humourous discussion concerning the 0/1 question, but was, in fact, a completely sincere, vigorous, and humorous contribution to that discussion! Guess my sense of humor is 1 base indexed, or something. :-) Also, I didn't know we were talking about "writing better code". I was under the impression we were debating the relative merits of the design decision behind REBOL being one base indexed, as opposed to (what I think you're arguing) the more "superior" zero base indexing. What I've tried to do, other than provide amusement, is to present my understanding of the justification behind REBOL's one-base indexing -- that it has a lot to do with conceptual portability, but maybe I've been to round about in getting there? Supporting this, I've argued that zero-based indexing is less intuitive for most (but certainly not all) worldly applications. We can judge REBOL design based on pure mathematics, ease of use, aesthetics, conciseness, consistency, many different criteria. If the goal of REBOL was "academic correctness", then it may be appropriate to judge it based on correctness, the ease with which you can prove functions, etc. If the goal of REBOL is to help people work with direct memory and arrays, then many of these considerations wrt to zero based indexing might be more important. The "goals of REBOL" are hard to enumerate (at least I'm not especially good at it), but I can say that one-based indexing is as fundamental to the "goals of REBOL" as anything else, and it is from its goals that REBOL should be judged. Maybe the problem here is in the articulation of the "goals of REBOL". Don't know what to say-- that's how I view my contribution to our discussion. The discussion has been fun, and I hope it was useful for someone reading along, if it has not be for you, Mr. Joel. Cheers! -jeff