Re: [Rd] [R] Semantics of sequences in R

From: Wacek Kusnierczyk <>
Date: Tue, 24 Feb 2009 11:31:13 +0100

Dimitris Rizopoulos wrote:
> in my opinion the point of the whole discussion could be summarized by
> the question, what is a design flaw? This is totally subjective, and
> it happens almost everywhere in life. Take human languages as an
> example and in particular, English. I do not know the history of the
> English language but I can guess at some point some people decided
> that the past tense for "give" should be "gave" and not "gived"
> according to the standard rule, possibly because they thought it has
> better acoustic.
> Is this a design flaw of English? Some might argue yes, maybe they
> would think "gived" does not have a that bad acoustic or they could
> have come up with another possibility than "gave". Does this confuse
> new users of English? Of course it does -- I had to spent many hours
> learning the past tense and past particle of the irregular verbs.
> Should it be changed? Then almost all existing code (i.e., English
> texts) should be rewritten, which I think demonstrates why some people
> are a bit reluctant in design changes.
> To close I'd like to share with you a Greek saying (maybe also a
> saying in other parts of the world) that goes, for every rule there is
> an exception. The important thing, in my opinion, is that these
> exceptions are documented.

all this is true; however, programming languages are not natural languages, there are substantial differences, and conclusions valid for natural languages are not necessarily valid for programming languages.

vQ mailing list Received on Tue 24 Feb 2009 - 09:35:22 GMT

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