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Date: -- (:)
From: Thomas Fischbacher <Thomas.Fischbacher@P...>
Subject: Re: [Caml-list] Estimating the size of the ocaml community

On Thu, 3 Feb 2005, Bardur Arantsson wrote:

> > >(7) I cannot easily (format t "DEBUG: compsite-thingy-bla-now-is ~A~%" 
> > >bla).
> 
> > I don't quite follow; is there something wrong with Printf?
> 
> It can only print simple values, not compound values such as records,
> objects, etc... Well, alright, it can use a custom printer, but there
> shouldn't really be any need to have to write custom printers for
> e.g. records when it's patently obvious how they should be printed (in
> the absence of a more specific format).

Boy, it *does* suck if you just discovered a hairy problem and have to put 
all your time and energy into resolving this and then are 
annoyed/distracted/slowed down by the necessity to work on "ballast code",
like writing special-purpose debug-printing functions ad-hoc.

In Perl, one can at least use Data::Dumper for that purpose, as a 
substitute for Lisp's print/read consistency of structured data(*). 
Whenever I give a perl course, I make sure all my students do know how to 
use it for good.

(*) Which, by the way, is already 95% of what people recently 
"re-discovered" as XML, modulo unnecessarily cluttered syntax and the 
inability to serialize networked, self-referencing values on the one side, 
and i18n on the other.

-- 
regards,               tf@cip.physik.uni-muenchen.de              (o_
 Thomas Fischbacher -  http://www.cip.physik.uni-muenchen.de/~tf  //\
(lambda (n) ((lambda (p q r) (p p q r)) (lambda (g x y)           V_/_
(if (= x 0) y (g g (- x 1) (* x y)))) n 1))                  (Debian GNU)