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[REBOL] Re: Antwort: Re: WYSIWYG programming

From: brett:codeconscious at: 29-Oct-2000 3:29

Hi Joel,
> That sounds good. However, natural language and the common-sense > expectations of 'normal' people (or even programmers when they're > not programming) are notorious for their ambiguity and fuzziness.
Important qualities that traditional computing cannot deal with.
> I humbly propose that the need for precision in programming means > that rigorous, elegant, and minimalist definition should take > priority over everyday conversational comfort, should they ever > come into conflict.
Respectfully, I think you are putting up a language design goal that many (most?) computer languages have been aiming for for years. The same thing that many (most?) serious (experienced?) programmers would aim for in their programs. A mindset legacy of structured programming, provable programs, etc. There is nothing wrong with this - indeed it is necessary line of thinking, and up until recently I would have seconded your proposal for Rebol to follow this goal. Now I think otherwise. 1) If feel that "rigorous", "elegant" and "minimalist" are from the Mathematical space of thinking. Paradoxically, I think these concepts are very subjective. 2) I believe one of the main aims of Rebol is to be a useful language. Its practical and pragmatic approach has been the selling factor for me to invest my time in it.That said, I do agree with you (and others) that it needs a more detailed supporting documentation set on the language, but I can accept that the language itself is still stabilising. 3) "precision in programming" reminded me of the often heard "Arrgghh! It did what I said, not what I meant!". I'm hoping that Rebol will succeed in reducing the occurrence of this phrase via dialecting. I hope you don't find my comments frustrating - I am deliberately "coming in from a different angle". They are meant to invite the questioning of perhaps long held "truths". In the Rebel fashion ;) One last thing which has perplexed me with this whole thread. Your example of the ordering of logical values. Why? What do you use such a thing for? I've been trying to think back over my programming experience for a practical example of this but I've failed miserably. Maybe my experience wasn't broad enough or maybe I just needed a coffee! For me, I have to agree with Rebol, ordering logical values seems to be a nonsense. Grouping fine, but ordering?! Thus, pick's behaviour (using true/false as selector) as long as it is consistent with poke seems ok. Brett.