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Re: What happened to the whole "small core" idea?

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Peter Rabbitson
October 28, 2012 08:59
Re: What happened to the whole "small core" idea?
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On Sat, Oct 27, 2012 at 09:32:40AM -0400, Peter Martini wrote:
> Just a couple of thoughts from my phone, which is why I cut out the message:
> 1. Sub signatures have been prototyped, and quite successfully, on CPAN.
> The internal interface could be improved, but the core support is there.

This is simply untrue. There has never yet been an implementation on CPAN
which concerned itself with the amount of arguments. Nor has there been
an implementation which in any way altered the behavior/contents of @_.

Yes, you can argue that all this new behavior is scoped and driven by 
feature pragmas, but to me this argument is void. @_ is a nasty warty 
semi-global. It can transcend scopes by being preserved on certain 
jumps. After the original proposal it took you *several months* to 
consider what happens when the size of @_ does not match the signature. 
I wonder what you feel about method calls - will all the rules apply the 
same? What will this do to monkeypatching? This is anything but a sign 
of a thought through feature.

> 2. The docs in perldoc explicitly suggest, going back to at least 5.8.x,
> which is about all I use for now, that alphabetical characters in
> prototypes had been banned to allow for this syntax to be added in the
> future.
> I agree wholeheartedly on not adding new keywords, but this feels more like
> filling a gap then adding something new, using a model for the feature that
> has been successful on CPAN.

I never said keywords - I said syntax. Not only is your proposal adding 
new syntax *to the language core*, it does so by hijacking unused parts 
of a preexisting syntax (prototypes). No implementation on CPAN has 
attempted this so far.

I also feel that I need to remind you that while I am attacking your 
idea, I am not attacking you. This thread may grow heated, and I do not 
want you to take away any personal feelings from it. Your implementation 
skills are way ahead of mine, and your willingness to get something done 
is remarkable. I have no problems with any of that and I am happy to see 
your energy being channeled into OSS in general and Perl in particular. 
However I still think, and will continue to furiously argue, that the 
goal you are pursuing is at best half-baked and at worst ill-concieved. 
I just felt I need to write an explicit paragraph about this.


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