Whitespace delimited formats

Whitespace delimited formats

Recently I’ve had the opportunity to dabble with Python, the whitespace delimited variant of Ruby.

I always felt whitespace delimited formats are unwieldy, now I know they are. For one, your editor can’t help you.

def sheep():
  a = 123

When pressing ‘enter’ just after the \‘3’, is your method done? Your editor can’t know and thus can de-indent. Even typing a new \‘def’ won’t help you as this is valid Python. Stupid.

Then there are the no-op methods (granted: a small thing). But imagine sketching out a program. You can’t leave the method bodies empty:

def sheep():

def herd():

This is an IndentationError. You’ll have to use the language keyword \‘pass’ to make this valid Python. Ugh.

To end this on a positive note; I really do like the list comprehensions in Python. Nice and clean:

[ transform(item) for item in items ]
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