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Re: #\a octothorpe syntax vs SRFI 10



On Sat, 1 Jan 2005, bear wrote:

> I think I agree with Mr. Bothner here.  SRFI-10 syntax is excellent for
> user-defined types, for types such as time introduced by libraries, etc.
> I value SRFI-10 because it makes the scheme type system *extensible*,
> not because I think it's particularly excellent syntax for any particular
> thing.

SRFI 10 has nothing to do with extensibility of the type system.  It
simply provides a way for syntactic extensions, which happens to be
useful for new external representations, to not complicate Scheme's
syntax unnecessarily.  It is expressly designed to _prevent_ such
unnecessary complications of Scheme's syntax as are being proposed by
others here and to make these extensions more consistent & uniform.

> Arrays, properly supported, are not an extension.  They're a core language
> feature like lists.  They deserve their own syntax.

Lists deserve their own syntax because the syntax is _defined_ in terms
of them.  Do procedures deserve their own lexical syntax, too?  (And,
no, responding with 'LAMBDA!' is not useful.)  Arrays may be written
literally, but they do _not_ arise _nearly_ as frequently as lists in
Scheme code.  There is very little reason, beyond the nebulous
aesthetics that Per Bothner has expressed, to give them as special
syntax as lists are given.