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Re: [Caml-list] Future of labels
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Date: 2001-04-01 (21:15)
From: Yaron M. Minsky <yminsky@c...>
Subject: Re: [Caml-list] Future of labels
I make heavy use of labels in classic mode both for the
extra type safety it provides and for documentation.  I
find it to be extremely useful, and would be sad to see
classic mode go. I've never felt a great need for commuting
of non-optional arguments.  LablTk, at least, seemed quite
usable in classic mode.

The idea of stripping labels out of the standard library
seems like a mistake.  The main thing I like about labels
is the extra safety they provide.  For example, the ~key
and ~data labels for the function in Map's iter is very
useful, particularly when the key and data happen to be the
same type.

I agree that having ocaml have one standard mode would be
best, if possible.  If there continue to be two modes, I am
strongly in favor of a pragma for specifying the mode on a
file-by-file basis.

I guess my ideal solution would be to have classic mode (or
some sound version of it) be the standard.  I see no great
value in commuting labels for non-optional arguments
(though I understand many disagree) and allowing novices to
ignore labels alltogether is enormously important --- ML is
weird enough for someone schooled in imperative languages,
without needing to understand labels as well.

(On another note, it would be lovely if one of these days
ocaml could move to something like the alternative syntax
shipped with camlp4.  There are a number of bits of the
caml syntax that are quite counterintuitive, most of which
are fixed with the alternative syntax.)


|--------/            Yaron M. Minsky              \--------|
|--------\ /--------|

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