Nice presentation of Dana Moore on Oscon

Discussion in 'Python' started by Gerrit Muller, Jul 11, 2003.

  1. A colleage attended me on the presentation of Dana Moore on Oscon:
    "The Seven Habits of Highly Effective Technology Disruption
    Python Survival in a Java & .Net World"
    http://www.infoether.com/~rich/pycon2003.pdf

    A very nice presentation. I do have one small comment: Python is
    characterized as "weakly typed", which should be "dynamic types", or
    what people often mean to say "not static typed".

    The difference has been discussed many times in this newsgroup. Dynamic
    typing requires a different approach than static typing. Programmers
    from the static world have to make a mental adjustment to become
    effective in this different paradigm.

    kind regards, Gerrit Muller
    --
    Gaudi systems architecting:
    http://www.extra.research.philips.com/natlab/sysarch/
    Gerrit Muller, Jul 11, 2003
    #1
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  2. Gerrit Muller

    Aahz Guest

    In article <>,
    Gerrit Muller <> wrote:
    >
    >A very nice presentation. I do have one small comment: Python is
    >characterized as "weakly typed", which should be "dynamic types", or
    >what people often mean to say "not static typed".


    Unfortunately, Bruce Eckel has been perpetuating that terminology. I'm
    in the process of writing a rebuttal.

    http://www.artima.com/intv/typing.html
    --
    Aahz () <*> http://www.pythoncraft.com/

    "Not everything in life has a clue in front of it...." --JMS
    Aahz, Jul 11, 2003
    #2
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  3. Gerrit Muller

    Martin Maney Guest

    Aahz <> wrote:
    > Unfortunately, Bruce Eckel has been perpetuating that terminology. I'm
    > in the process of writing a rebuttal.


    > http://www.artima.com/intv/typing.html


    In this it sounds as though Mr. Eckel is coming around to the right view.
    In the first part he seems to be using "latent", and only says at one
    point "...latent typing, sometimes called weak typing...". And he
    repeatedly uses the phrase "strong static type checking" for what is
    supposed to be the strength of C++ and Java, and notes that "Strong
    static type checking forces the programmer to do a lot of extra work."

    So I get the impression that he is making that journey of discovery
    that we know so well. Or, anyway, I know it - maybe you didn't go
    through the same wringer that made B&D static type checking seem like a
    pretty good idea in contrast to what came before? I used to think C++
    was the best thing since the symbolic assembler, or maybe object
    Code:
    linking...
    
    I don't know that I care much for "latent typing", although it has a
    certain attraction.  If nothing else, it's shorter than "strong dynamic
    typing", the first word of which seems necessary these days.  :-(
    
    But whether or not Mr. Eckel is still contributing to it, I can attest
    that there is a general confusion about this among programmers, perhaps
    especially java programmers.  Just the other day I whacked one upside
    the head (virtually; we were chatting on IRC) with the distinction
    between "strong" and "static" typing and had the pleasure of watching
    his eyes light up.  Well, I imagine they lit up.  But that was only
    one, so if you'd get cracking on that paper...  :-)
    
    -- 
    Passport brilliantly combines the kludgey and unstable nature of NIS+
    with the insecurity of the trusted hosts concept to produce
    a nine-step process with obvious opportunities for
    security and other abuses.  -- Paul Murphy
    Martin Maney, Jul 13, 2003
    #3
  4. Gerrit Muller

    Aahz Guest

    In article <bemi6m$evd$>, Aahz <> wrote:
    >In article <>,
    >Gerrit Muller <> wrote:
    >>
    >>A very nice presentation. I do have one small comment: Python is
    >>characterized as "weakly typed", which should be "dynamic types", or
    >>what people often mean to say "not static typed".

    >
    >Unfortunately, Bruce Eckel has been perpetuating that terminology. I'm
    >in the process of writing a rebuttal.
    >
    >http://www.artima.com/intv/typing.html


    All right, my rebuttal is now at
    http://www.artima.com/weblogs/viewpost.jsp?thread=7590
    --
    Aahz () <*> http://www.pythoncraft.com/

    "Not everything in life has a clue in front of it...." --JMS
    Aahz, Jul 16, 2003
    #4
  5. Many thanks for your rebuttal.

    My picture of the situation is this: the Python interpreter is in effect
    placing assert statements after (inside) every Python statement. This makes
    Python in practice much more safe and convenient than any static language.

    No, this doesn't directly relate to types. However, IMO the real issues
    aren't about types, they are about safety and convenience. Python crushes
    any static language as far as convenience goes. This much is obvious.

    Theoretically all languages are unsafe. Python programs can throw uncaught
    exceptions just like C++ asserts can fail. In practice, though, the Python
    interpreter makes development so much safer that one can just "blast away"
    without worrying too much about the kinds of things compilers typically
    worry about. And my Python programs have been much more robust than the
    equivalent C++ programs, even without pychecker's help.

    This is probably all obvious to Pythonists, and incomprehensible to others.
    Oh well... :)

    Edward
    --------------------------------------------------------------------
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    Leo: Literate Editor with Outlines
    Leo: http://webpages.charter.net/edreamleo/front.html
    --------------------------------------------------------------------
    Edward K. Ream, Jul 16, 2003
    #5
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