Requests for language changes

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Requests for language changes

Steve Litt
Hi all,

My archives tell me I've been on this list since December, 2010. During
that time, requests for changes to the Lua language were frequent and
persistent. I've almost always opposed them, because they all made the
language more complicated, and I like Lua's simplicity. Understand a
table and a metatable, and you're pretty much set.

Recently it was suggested that many of us have been trolls without
knowing it. Hmmm, was my suggestion that we have a continue statement
trolling? Well, I asked a couple times, fielded a couple replies, and
then I just made a table/object that de-necessitated the continue
statement, and went on to other things. Was my suggestion that Lua have
a project-curated set of libraries and tools trolling? Fact is, when I
found out the vast majority of Lua users want to do C interaction and
games and the like, instead of applications like I wanted to do, I
stopped asking the question: beneficiaries like me would just be too
rare.

The constant requests for language changes, most of which I consider
unnecessary and more than a few I think would have been detrimental if
accepted, are in my opinion a regrettable distraction, which fortunately
is pretty much ignored by the shepherds of the language.

But in no way do these requests come anywhere near "trolling". If you
want to see trolls, I can show you bunches of them, on other lists.

If someone comes on the Lua list continually denigrating Lua, or
continually extolling the superiority of Perl, Python, Ruby, Scheme or
whatever, THAT's trolling. If somebody comes on list yelling about
national or international politics, THAT's trolling. What I'm posting
now is probably trolling, as was the original post of the recent "What
is a troll" post.

But the constant and insistent suggestions of language changes are
not trolling. A pain in the posterior? Definitely. Trolling, no.

SteveT

Steve Litt
August 2016 featured book: Manager's Guide to Technical Troubleshooting
  Brand new, second edition
http://www.troubleshooters.com/mgr

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Re: Requests for language changes

Tim Hill

> On Sep 2, 2016, at 9:00 PM, Steve Litt <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> Hi all,
>
> If someone comes on the Lua list continually denigrating Lua, or
> continually extolling the superiority of Perl, Python, Ruby, Scheme or
> whatever, THAT's trolling. If somebody comes on list yelling about
> national or international politics, THAT's trolling. What I'm posting
> now is probably trolling, as was the original post of the recent "What
> is a troll" post.
>
> But the constant and insistent suggestions of language changes are
> not trolling. A pain in the posterior? Definitely. Trolling, no.
>

+1.


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Re: Requests for language changes

Andrew Starks-2
In reply to this post by Steve Litt

On Fri, Sep 2, 2016 at 23:00 Steve Litt <[hidden email]> wrote:
Hi all,

My archives tell me I've been on this list since December, 2010. During
that time, requests for changes to the Lua language were frequent and
persistent. I've almost always opposed them, because they all made the
language more complicated, and I like Lua's simplicity. Understand a
table and a metatable, and you're pretty much set.

Recently it was suggested that many of us have been trolls without
knowing it. Hmmm, was my suggestion that we have a continue statement
trolling? Well, I asked a couple times, fielded a couple replies, and
then I just made a table/object that de-necessitated the continue
statement, and went on to other things. Was my suggestion that Lua have
a project-curated set of libraries and tools trolling? Fact is, when I
found out the vast majority of Lua users want to do C interaction and
games and the like, instead of applications like I wanted to do, I
stopped asking the question: beneficiaries like me would just be too
rare.

The constant requests for language changes, most of which I consider
unnecessary and more than a few I think would have been detrimental if
accepted, are in my opinion a regrettable distraction, which fortunately
is pretty much ignored by the shepherds of the language.

But in no way do these requests come anywhere near "trolling". If you
want to see trolls, I can show you bunches of them, on other lists.

If someone comes on the Lua list continually denigrating Lua, or
continually extolling the superiority of Perl, Python, Ruby, Scheme or
whatever, THAT's trolling. If somebody comes on list yelling about
national or international politics, THAT's trolling. What I'm posting
now is probably trolling, as was the original post of the recent "What
is a troll" post.

But the constant and insistent suggestions of language changes are
not trolling. A pain in the posterior? Definitely. Trolling, no.

SteveT

Steve Litt
August 2016 featured book: Manager's Guide to Technical Troubleshooting
  Brand new, second edition
http://www.troubleshooters.com/mgr


Steve, I respect your opinion and I disagree with your assessment of trolling.

It occurs to me that troll has a double meaning that I had not considered. Besides the green man we have fishing's version. We plod along with bait, waiting for someone to grab it, and then hold court. It does not require rudeness.

It does require two things. Obsessive frequency and a hypothetical problem. The first is bad because the inevitable bickering gets old after a while; a once pleasant activity becomes less so. The later makes it impossible to nail down and therefore suitable for keeping the thrill alive.

I won't go back and judge your posts, but I'll hazard a guess that since nobody has complained about you, there must be a dearth of either requirement.

I do apologize for adding more noise on top of the noise. It is hard to know when I am taking a stand, fanning the flames or pumping my ego.

-Andrew

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Re: Requests for language changes

Dirk Laurie-2
2016-09-03 7:16 GMT+02:00 Andrew Starks <[hidden email]>:
>
> On Fri, Sep 2, 2016 at 23:00 Steve Litt <[hidden email]> wrote:
>>
>> But the constant and insistent suggestions of language changes are
>> not trolling. A pain in the posterior? Definitely. Trolling, no.
>
> Steve, I respect your opinion and I disagree with your assessment of
> trolling.

Whatever we call it, the one thing that we can rely on is that
Roberto and Luiz [1] cannot be swayed by specious cant.
In the time I've been a Lua user [2], they have only once [3]
made a change I did not approve of, and even that was not
a language change.

So actually one can sit back and relax the voyage. The Captain is
tending the helm and the Chief Engineer is minding the engines.

[1] I leave Waldemar out because (sensible fellow) he is not
active on the list.
[2] Going on six years, I think.
[3] When the math support dropped to lower than that of
my ancient Casio school calculator.

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Re: Requests for language changes

Rena
In reply to this post by Andrew Starks-2

On Sep 3, 2016 1:17 AM, "Andrew Starks" <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
>
> On Fri, Sep 2, 2016 at 23:00 Steve Litt <[hidden email]> wrote:
>>
>> Hi all,
>> [...]
>>
>
> Steve, I respect your opinion and I disagree with your assessment of trolling.
>
> It occurs to me that troll has a double meaning that I had not considered. Besides the green man we have fishing's version. We plod along with bait, waiting for someone to grab it, and then hold court. It does not require rudeness.
>
I'm pretty sure the fishing meaning is the intended one. A person "trolls along" forums, waiting for someone to take the bait. Nothing to do with the kind of troll that has green skin. Although in recent years, the term has been misused to mean anything annoying, even unintentionally. ("I got trolled by my car tire, it popped and made me late!")

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Re: Requests for language changes

Martin
In reply to this post by Steve Litt
On 16-09-02 09:00 PM, Steve Litt wrote:
> The constant requests for language changes ...
> ...
> But in no way do these requests come anywhere near "trolling".

Due high frequency and quite novice quality of requests I tend to be
against certain ideas just due prejudice to it's author. But it is a joy
to read some polite, cold-anger replies. Without them this list may
become too bleak.

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Re: Requests for language changes

Dirk Laurie-2
2016-09-04 12:19 GMT+02:00 Martin <[hidden email]>:
> On 16-09-02 09:00 PM, Steve Litt wrote:
>> The constant requests for language changes ...
>> ...
>> But in no way do these requests come anywhere near "trolling".
>
> But it is a joy to read some polite, cold-anger replies.
> Without them this list may become too bleak.

I made a resolution a few weeks ago to stop writing those.
Don't tempt me ...