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[REBOL] Re: Zebol (was ordinal cardinal)..

From: joel::neely::fedex::com at: 9-Jul-2001 11:56

Hi, Jeff, Jeff Kreis wrote:
> Howdy, Joel: > > > It is, of course, much simpler simply to do without > > features that affect the global state. Just imagine the > > chaos that could ensue if, for example, we allowed a > > function to change the current directory, close a file, or > > modify a global variable... The mind boggles! ;-) >
> It's essentially "critical section" code, and would make > programming REBOL Z-based like programming a device driver, > not very appropriately equated in consequences to: > > "change the current directory, close a file, or modify a > global variable..." >
Bearing in mind the role that exaggeration and sarcasm has had in the discussion, I had thought that the ";-)" suffix would serve as an adequate indicator that I wasn't totally serious. (I seem to recall someone posting a message that exaggerated a discussion of indexing bases into a proposal for fully parenthesized expressions and mandating Polish postfix... Surely we're all entitled to *some* amount of humor? ;-) However, I *will* say that the kinds of bugs that arise from the so-called "side effects" of massaging global data or state are so well documented that we're really talking about a quantitative difference rather than a qualitative one -- the main question is how much risk one is willing to take. As a horrible example of this problem gone to seed, I recall a database language from a few years ago that had quite a number of global variables that affected the behavior of several language constructs. Even worse (fatally IMHO) it was missing any means to *read* some of them, which meant that it was practically infeasible to write well-mannered routines that would save the state, do whatever, and then restore the state. Truly a nightmare!
> But, as you say, you're not arguing for a global Z setting -- > so that's neither here nor there.. (-: >
Agreed. -jn- ___________________________________________________________________ One is the loneliest number... - Three Dog Night joel'dot'neely'at'fedex'dot'com