[erlang-questions] Parallel Shootout & a style question

Richard A. O'Keefe <>
Wed Sep 3 04:36:40 CEST 2008


On 3 Sep 2008, at 10:27 am, Isaac Gouy wrote:
> People tend to have opinions, some justifiable some less so.
>
> The alternatives seem to be:
> - never make a mistake
> - make mistakes but don't fix them
> - make mistakes and fix them.
>
> Would you really prefer that we simply didn't fix the mistakes we make
> with the rules?

There's a better alternative.

Versioning.

The criteria for version N of a problem remain what they were
for all time.  When you learn better, you release version N+1.
What was a solution to version N as stated remains a solution
for all time, but might not be a solution to version N+1.  It
is a basic principle of justice, after all, that you cannot
make laws retroactively.  There's a lovely line in Agatha
Christie's "Crooked House" that goes something like

	He never actually broke the law, but somehow,
	after he found something, you had to have a law
	about it.




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