in reply to
Re: Linguistic determinism is the idea that language shapes thought.
in thread What's wrong with Perl 6?
Should not we talk of the Djikstra hypothesis for computer environments instead of Sapir-Whorf?
The tools we use have a profound (and devious!) influence on our thinking habits, and, therefore, on our thinking abilities.
in this paper.
What I like about Perl is that it takes malleability of
the natural language without aping its surface syntaxe.
Unlike Fortran and Cobol who are not malleable enough
and take from natural language only a few words used as
Perl 6 is getting rid of the Perl 5 ossification to give
a new meaning to malleability. Think Perl 6 macros for
example. Introspection is proper to human thought, it should
be the rules in programming languages.
So the second Djikstra hypothesis, is wrong when you
take it for its spirit :
Projects promoting programming in "natural language" are intrinsically doomed to fail.
Speaking of syntax, the second language to impress me for
its concision is Haskell, that I discovered thru pugs. Like Larry Wall did for Perl, the conceptors
of haskell did put a lot of thought to get it right. It seens that most
language designers don't think much about language syntax
or for pedagogical reason stick to the convention of
In the late eighties, Gosling, when designing NeWS, an innovating window system at the time,
picked the postfixed syntax of PostScript with the clean semantic
of the PostScript imaging system, dooming NeWS from the start. PostScript is intended to be generated by programs, not
Later, by mostly picking the C syntax, Gosling found a public for Java but, in my opinion, made it uninteresting from the start even
if the idea of portability thru a virtual machine was brillant even if, in the long term, it did not panned out as well as expected. But this is due to refusing to make the
language open source in due time, causing incompatible implementations and