[erlang-questions] DRY principle and the syntax inconsistency in fun vs. vanilla functions

Parnell Springmeyer <>
Wed May 18 18:36:16 CEST 2011


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Alright dude, you seriously need to chill out - I know the "someone's
wrong on the internet" fever is hard to quench but at this point you're
nit picking and laying flame bait. Which I won't bite because I've
already wasted a good portion of my day on this exchange.

We're ultimately on the same side - I love the language as it is,
period. If you think something should be changed, go do it, other people
are writing different front-ends to the VM so I imagine it would be a
trivial change for you to make this particular change yourself. If it
catches on, I'm sure the maintainers would be happy to merge with
backwards compatibility for those (like me) that prefer the verbose
syntax.

Have a nice day and please stop taking these emails personally - it
truly is "whatevs". :)

Michael Turner <> writes:

> "Then we would have someone like you complaining the opposite
> and proposing we all do it the way it is now..."
>
> Another strawman. Where do I advocate using multi-clause fun syntax for
> named functions *exclusively*? I don't. Clearly, even if the proposal
> here were wildly popular, there would be the problem of compatibility
> with existing code.
>
> "Practical considerations would be better defined through education
> for core language features."
>
> Where have I suggested changing even ONE single core language feature?
>
> Strawmen, strawmen, strawmen.
>
> -michael turner
>
> On Thu, May 19, 2011 at 1:11 AM, Parnell Springmeyer <
>> wrote:
>
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>    
>     > If I argued only from syntactic consistency, you'd have a point.
>     > Frankly, I don't really care about syntactic consistency, if it
>     doesn't
>     > get me something. Having to type less gets me something. Having
>     more
>     > readable code gets me something. Those are practical
>     considerations,
>     > not mere pedantic ones. Dude.
>    
>     How do you type more? When I type a ";" in my editor it
>     auto-completes
>     the function clause for me, that is an empty argument for changing
>     something so trivial.
>    
>     Practical considerations would be better defined through education
>     for
>     core language features.
>    
>     > What you have as
>     >
>     >    some_func(X, Y) ->
>     >        %% Long bit of code
>     >        ...;
>     >    some_func(X, []) ->
>     >        %% More code
>     >
>     > could, as I proposed above, also be written
>     >
>     >   some_func
>     >      (X,Y) -> %% long bit of code
>     >                  ...;
>     >      (X,[]) -> %% More code
>     >                  ....
>    
>     Because, now I would have:
>    
>        some_func
>            (X, Y) ->
>                %% Long bit of code
>                ...;
>            (X, []) ->
>                %% More code
>                ....
>    
>     It makes the "structure" less flat when you start adding in
>     indentation
>     levels (which you *have* to do if you are writing non-trivial
>     functions
>     in order to be able to read them two weeks later).
>    
>     Again, the style you are suggesting is really well suited for
>     functions
>     with small and concise function bodies. Which, is well suited for
>     the
>     lambda. I use this all the time for small functions:
>    
>        SomeFun = fun (X, Y)  -> %% Short peice of code;
>                      (X, []) -> %% Short peice of code.
>    
>     It's obviously much easier and quicker to read - but I don't
>     beleive
>     that is the case with named functions.
>    
>     > Why is this less readable to you? You could answer, "Because it's
>     not
>     > what I'm used to seeing in Erlang programs," but that begs the
>     > question. If people were more used to seeing the latter --
>     because
>     > making Erlang syntactically more self-consistent made it possible
>     --
>     > that argument wouldn't have much force -- except as an argument
>     from
>     > pure conservatism.
>    
>     Then we would have someone like you complaining the opposite and
>     proposing we all do it the way it is now - that person would
>     probably be
>     me.
>    
>     > And this is entirely apart from "long bit of code" being a
>     classic
>     > Smell anyway:
>     >
>     >   http://www.soberit.hut.fi/mmantyla/BadCodeSmellsTaxonomy.htm
>    
>     This is why I used the word "pedantic", don't I know abstraction
>     and
>     orthogonality is preferred over monolithic functions? Of course I
>     do. But, what does one consider "long"? Some functions I write are
>     /better/ written as a long function to avoid unnecessary (read:
>     pedantic) abstraction that actually clouds the intent.
>    
>     - --
>     Parnell "ixmatus" Springmeyer (http://ixmat.us)
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- -- 
Parnell "ixmatus" Springmeyer (http://ixmat.us)
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