Things that may be removed

Nick Sabalausky a at a.a
Wed Dec 17 14:45:55 PST 2008

"bearophile" <bearophileHUGS at> wrote in message 
news:gib2kj$2bib$1 at
> Gide Nwawudu:
>> Learning Pascal before C maybe toughen me up, I haven't
>> suffered RSI typing ARRAY OF :)
> But Pascal arrays have other qualities, an example:
> type
>  TyArr = Array ['e' .. 'x'] of Integer;
> var
>  a1: TyArr;
> begin
>  a1['f'] := 10;
> ...
> That array has that range of chars as indexes, and if you want the 
> compiler at run time will control that only that range of chars is used. 
> In D you can do that as (probably typedef is much less common in D code 
> than the types section in Pascal programs):
> typedef int['x' - 'e'] TyArr;
> TyArr a1;
> int main() {
>    a1['f' - 'e'] = 10;
> ...
> But maybe such things aren't common enough to deserve a special support.
> Bye,
> bearophile

VB6 (and maybe VBScript) allows the lower bound of an array to be any 
interger less than whatever the upper bound is. Personally, I've never liked 
that. The mere possibility for that forces all code that uses arrays to use 
the ugly "UBound(array) - LBound(array)" to get length (unless you want to 
write and use a non-standard array length function) and start all iterations 
at "LBound(array)" instead of 0. Then again, since D has ".length" and 
"foreach", those might not be problems for D.

I think Andrei has previously suggested the idea of dropping the keyword 
"new" from class instantiations / heap allocations. I wouldn't like that. 
The "new" makes class instantiations / heap allocations easily greppable. I 
don't think I would want to give that up.

Also, as far as the quoted in the original post (such as "Perfection is 
attained, not when no more can be added, but when no more can be removed."). 
I normally agree with such sentiment, but I don't consider it to bve 
particularly applicable to language design. I see a progamming langauge as 
being not a tool, but a toolbox. You wouldn't design a real 
carpentry/construction/etc. toolbox with a "Perfection is attained, not when 
no more can be added, but when no more can be removed." philosophy, would 
you? If you did, it would end up containing nothing but a hammer and a note 
saying "If all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail". If you 
did it with language design, you'd ultimately end up with brainfuck. 

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