paren-free call expressions

Jason Orendorff jason.orendorff at gmail.com
Fri May 20 11:26:52 PDT 2011


On Thu, May 19, 2011 at 2:45 AM, David Griffiths <dxgriffiths at gmail.com> wrote:
> - they overload the space character, making it mean something different in only a small fraction of cases.
> [...]
>
> The first point is major, in my opinion. If the goal is to have an argument list opener that doesn't require an explicit close, then some other character(s) would be a better solution than forcing people to read possible double-meanings into every space they see.
>
> U+0020 is consistently high up in the top 5 most-repeated characters in a JavaScript program, so overloading its meaning for a minor cosmetic effect is not justifiable IMO.

Could you clarify this objection? As I understand it, even with
paren-free call syntax, spaces would still have just one purpose: to
separate tokens.

Many, many languages (including Perl, Ruby, VB, Scala, Smalltalk,
Logo, and of course all the ML-like languages, including Haskell and
F#) do without parentheses for calls in some circumstances at least.
Do you use any of these languages? I quite like some of them.

-j


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