Basic Properties of Lists ("foreward") 
Author Message
 Basic Properties of Lists ("foreward")

"Foreword" is a wonderful example of ambiguity in the English language. It seems to be saying "towards the fore or front", but it sometimes means "from the fore or front".

It is similar to situations like "is a North wind coming from the North or going towards the North", and is an inflammable pyjama "un-flame-able or is it enflame-able"?

There ought to be a word for this particular kind of ambiguity.

Quote:

> > How about we use "Head" and "Tail" for terminology? In the final analysis I
> > don't think they are any more biased than "Front" and "Back". Plus those terms
> > are traditionally associated with lists, so they might be more acceptable to
> > Jeff. As an added bonus, I don't think anyone is liable to complain that it
> > ought to be "Tailward" and "Headward" instead. :-)

> Or CAR and CDR, with associated CARward and CDRward directions :)

> Head and Tail are OK. I'm primarily interested in being able to say
> things like

> the list is sorted in ascending order

> without adding confusing terminology about the direction of traversal
> needed to observe this property; Head -> Tail is implied. Saying the
> list is sorted when traversed Forward or Frontward is unclear.

> Similarly, I'd like to be able to say

> the previous element from position P

> without adding a direction; the previous element is closer to the Head.
> Is the Forward neighbor of P closer to the Head or the Tail?

> Maybe I'm just dense, but I find such terminology confusing.

> --
> Jeffrey Carter



Sat, 29 May 2004 21:02:36 GMT  
 Basic Properties of Lists ("foreward")

Quote:

> "Foreword" is a wonderful example of ambiguity in the English language. It seems to be saying "towards the fore or front", but it sometimes means "from the fore or front".

Actually, I still recommend the terminology from the EiffelBase
(www.eiffel.com) libraries. "Forth" and "Back", as in back and forth,
are the directions for one-dimensional traversal. There's a ton of good
terminology there.

Quote:
> It is similar to situations like "is a North wind coming from the North or going towards the North", and is an inflammable pyjama "un-flame-able or is it enflame-able"?

Worse. One means it will catch on fire, and the other means it will
explode. (Inflamable and imflamable, that is.)

--
Darren New
San Diego, CA, USA (PST). Cryptokeys on demand.
   You will soon read a generic fortune cookie.



Sun, 30 May 2004 00:59:46 GMT  
 Basic Properties of Lists ("foreward")

Quote:

> Actually, I still recommend the terminology from the EiffelBase
> (www.eiffel.com) libraries. "Forth" and "Back", as in back and forth,
> are the directions for one-dimensional traversal. There's a ton of good
> terminology there.

I second that one.  If you can find a copy of Meyer's "Reusable
Software", it's well worth a read (the syntax of Eiffel is pretty close
to Ada and should present no particular problems).  The reason the book
and the EiffelBase components are good is that they take a systematic
approach to naming and organization of all the components in the
library.  Since it uses multiple inheritance extensively (as is the
Eiffel style), there are concepts that won't be directly applicable to
an Ada style component library.  But there're still an awful lot of
overlapping concepts there.  The whole library is very well thought out.

- Ed



Sun, 30 May 2004 01:20:49 GMT  
 
 [ 3 post ] 

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