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Date: -- (:)
From: Gérard_Huet <Gerard.Huet@i...>
Subject: Re: [Caml-list] CamlP4 Revised syntax comment

Le lundi 28 octobre 2002, à 05:56 PM, Alexander V.Voinov a écrit :

> Hi All,
>
> From: "Kontra, Gergely" <kgergely@mlabdial.hit.bme.hu>
> Subject: Re: [Caml-list] CamlP4 Revised syntax comment
> Date: Mon, 28 Oct 2002 09:38:04 +0100 (CET)
>
>> I really dislikes the do { } notation.
>> My suggestion is to use do end pairs, which is borrowed also from ruby.
>> And if we want more ruby-ish (ada-like?), the matching can be
>> match a with
>> | 0 ->
>> | n ->
>> end
>
> I second this.
>
> Alexander
>

Frankly,
I do not think that design of a programming language (or any reasonably 
complex
scientific activity) can be seriously accomplished by exchanges through a
large mailing list using random criteria of taste and distaste. In other 
words,
there is no "motion" to second, we have no tradition of design by voting.

The revised syntax of Ocaml is certainly not the final satisfactory 
solution, but it is a well thought out experiment in improving the 
syntax of Ocaml along orthogonal principles. Its community may not be as 
large as the wider community using the standard syntax, but it is a 
community of users who appreciate stability,
upward compatibility, and principled discussion.

I personally believe that syntax, and notation in general, is important. 
Important
for guiding intuition consistently with the semantics, important for 
teaching the
language, important for avoiding mistakes such as case capture because 
of poor
bracketing. So it deserves a serious argumentation. Furthermore, it is 
not just
a matter of concrete syntax, it is also a matter of consistent tools for 
the edition and maintenance of programs in a spirit of literate 
programming.

Gérard Huet

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