[REBOL] Re: Bug! in assignment to date! values with stackedset-pathvalues
From: joel:neely:fedex at: 12-Nov-2002 11:16
Pardon my disagreeing, but I think we're really agreeing! ;-)
(I think perhaps I used too much shorthand, and I'm too pessimistic!)
Ladislav Mecir wrote:
> Hi Joel,
> > I really have to regard this as a serious flaw of documentation
> > (at least!), and respectfully repeat my passionate request for
> > the kind of official, authoritative documentation that would
> > allow users to understand what is happening and why!
> My POV differs from yours in two points:
> a) I think, that the situation is a result of a "hack solution".
> The "strange" behaviour looks like being unexpected not just by
> users, but by implementors too (IMO)...
> b) The behaviour looks like not being designed with these effects
> in mind and it needs a second thought...
I included the "(at least!)" to hint that I suspect this was the
result of some ad hoc implementation choice(s), rather than a
consequence of strategic design. I had originally worded my views
a bit more strongly, but toned them down before hitting "Send" to
avoid leaving the impression that I was REBOL-bashing. Sorry if
I was too elliptic!
> This can (at least for me) explain, why it isn't documented.
But there are lots of things that aren't documented! The lack of
authoritative specification for what the built-in features of the
language are *supposed* to do is IMHO a significant impediment to
its adoption in the larget world of professional programming.
When faced with the question of "What does this do?":
- Computing Scientists say, "Let's derive it from basic principles!"
- Software Engineers say, "Let's look it up in the specification!"
- Hackers say, "Let's try it and see what happens!"
> That is why I am not asking for a documentation change/addendum.
I think it would be easier to get a description of what REBOL
currently does (and *then* discuss possible changes) than to begin
with a request for changes in the absence of any clear statement of
intent. Past discussions about cases where REBOLS behavior has
surprised its users (even the most supportive ones) have drawn a
response of, "Let REBOL be REBOL!" Hence my position of, "OK! Then
first tell me clearly what REBOL is!"
However, I'm sure we agree in the hope that documenting REBOL's
current behavior wouldn't be the end of the conversation!!!
Joel Neely joelDOTneelyATfedexDOTcom 901-263-4446