Threads for usrme

  1. 3

    I got so many aliases, but the ones I probably use the most are these:

    dft = difftool
    lol = log --oneline --graph --all
    l = log --graph --all
    branches = !git for-each-ref --color=always --sort=-committerdate --format='%(color:yellow)%(refname:short)%09%(color:green)%(authorname)%09%(color:blue)%(committerdate:relative)%09%(color:red)%(objectname:short)%09%(color:magenta)%(upstream:track)%09%(color:white)%(contents:subject)%(color:reset)' refs/heads refs/remotes|column -t -s $'\t'
    1. 2

      To me, my most used are:

      • gsd='git status -s | cut -d " " -f 3 | xargs -I {} git stash push {} -m "{}"'

      This takes everything that is currently staged or not and pushes into the stash with an appropriate message. What I’ve found annoying about stashing is that it by default uses the latest commit as the stash title instead of the far more descriptive file name.

      • gd='git diff --color-words'

      I’ve found this to be a far better diffing experience than the regular diff as when a single word changes within a line it shows it much more clearly. Same for staged changes: gds='git diff --staged --color-words'

      • gdog="git log --pretty=format:'%C(auto)%h %C(blue) %<|(20) %aI %C(auto) %d %s' --graph --all --decorate"

      A very clean history with just the short SHA, date, and message with the reference.

      function diff_stash() {
        # $1 - item number from 'git stash list'
        local item="$1"
        git stash show -p stash@{"$item"}

      This allows me to show what is in the stash based on the index.

      function gdogtag() {
        git log \
          --pretty=format:'%C(auto)%h %C(blue) %<|(20) %aI %C(auto) %d %s' \
          --graph \
          --decorate \
          "$(test -d "${PWD}/.git" && git describe --tags --abbrev=0 @^)..@"

      Shows me the commits between the current state and the previous tag.

    1. 7

      One more thing I have experienced on the Windows platform: when you UPX pack your binary, the various virus scanners are much more likely to flag you as malware, mostly because most malware is also UPX packed.

      1. 1

        Thanks for mentioning this! I’ll add this to the conclusion as an additional tidbit people should know.

      1. 7

        Was screaming the whole time “Hit the b key, it’ll make your life so much better!”

        Also vimtutor.

        1. 8

          As someone who just made the switch to NeoVim and the whole ecosystem it was still painful to watch! You gotta learn your tools…

          1. 2
          1. 3

            Cool experiment. I see s slow but steady trend over the last 5-10 years to bring more interactivity and user-friendlyness to the terminal. Point and click UIs have dominated and taken over everything because of their intuitiveness and because they are discovered. But once a user got into it, they were held hostage of horrible ergonomy and caped att the poor productivity of a mouse interaction.

            Terminal UX has been getting better. One example is fish shell, which does much of what this project does, albeit with a more implicit/minimal interface. This project closes the gap of discovering a cli tool with an UI as intuitive as a point and click one, while retaining the old rock solid standards or cli apps, and without needing to mode the hands from the keyboard. Wel done.

            Realistically, once one is familiar with a cli program, there is no reason anymore to use this as one can just enter the commands on the prompt. But this is great for exploring a new one.

            1. 2

              I would love to hear from the author behind Textualize and from the folks behind Charm about how viable such efforts to re-vitalize the terminal are. It seems from the outside that a lot of these projects fall more into the camp of “we do it because we can/it’s cool”, which may be enough, but they seem to also convey some notion that it improves the state of affairs. How much though?

              1. 2

                Incorrectly assumed this worked by parsing manpages and help strings. I see it is compatible with python library click.

                A couple of suggestions:

                • Make it compatible with argparse, which comes with python.
                • Wrap this in a script that accepts a command name and extracts the structure from manpages.
                1. 1

                  That may not be feasible, since usually you build the argparser in code and then execute it, whereas click works by decorating functions at the toplevel. There’s a moment to introspect with click that doesn’t exist with argparse.

                  1. 1

                    I think you could still do it something like this:

                    import argparse
                    parser = argparse.ArgumentParser(
                        description="What the program does",
                        epilog="Text at the bottom of help"
                    parser.add_argument("-c", "--count")
                    parser.add_argument("-v", "--verbose", action="store_true")
                  2. 1

           (CLI to GUI) works for the argparse module

                2. 1

                  I wonder if the next step in UI is having an LLM that you chat to, and it writes a CLI-ish command to execute.

                  1. 1

                    PowerShell is nice in this regard. All cmdlets advertise their arguments and types and if you run a cmdlet without arguments then it will give you an interactive prompt for each of them. Tab completion also works to show all of the arguments. The place PowerShell fails is that they went with a verb-noun convention that makes discovering cmdlets very hard.

                  1. 32

                    For historical context, I completely agree. For more modern things, the academic paper format has become so stylised and rigid that I’d recommend reading the blogs of people who write papers, rather than the papers, if you want to understand what they’re doing.

                    1. 4

                      Papers are more discoverable, though, specially since they all reference related papers. And they provide starting points, where blogs usually don’t.

                      Coming to someone’s blog is often like “The latest update on Cool Thing since [last post] is we were able to reprong the cohex-trie into being n-profligate by …” and then you have to do a depth-first traversal of the links to figure out what any of those words mean or what is going on.

                      1. 2

                        I’d also throw the Amazon Builders’ Library into the mix. I’ve found the write-ups they put up to be quite interesting and I’m glad they’re sharing these. There doesn’t seem to be an RSS feed one can subscribe to, but there are ways to stay up-to-date on new releases.

                        1. 2

                          I’ve done this but it always feels like… Cheating? :) I dunno.

                          1. 21

                            The papers I write always suffer from at least one out of:

                            • The venue only accepts things written in a particular shape (they never document this, but the review process is driven by implicit bias and everyone knows what a paper for X should look like) and so I have to shape things to meet expectations, rather than to communicate effectively.
                            • The page limit prevents me from properly explaining the details.
                            • The rigid deadline means I have to rush some experiments and not give proper root-cause analysis or miss some possible approaches that I don’t discover until later.

                            I write papers for two reasons:

                            • To get points in stupid bibliometric games that people care about for research jobs.
                            • To go to conferences and meet people I might want to hire.

                            I write publish blog posts, tech reports, and open source repositories to communicate the results of my research.

                            I say this as someone with a bunch of publications in top-tier venues, including some that won awards.

                            1. 5

                              This feeds my sneaking suspicion that “You should write papers” is more a mental toughness test and, dare I say it? Virtue signaling than an actual thought that this is a good way to learn new information about computer science :)

                              1. 7

                                Academic papers have a different audience than blog posts. They’re written for other experts in the field (unless it’s a review article, which are more for introducing new researchers to the relevant literature). They are rarely expository about concepts that were developed elsewhere in the literature.

                                Different audience, different content.

                                1. 2

                                  I think that’s quite an optimistic framing.

                                  I did my PhD at Swansea, where people rarely sent papers to top tier venues. I then went to Cambridge, where the attitude was to always send things to top-tier venues or not bother. Once you start aiming for the top venues, you learn that they have a particular shape of paper that they accept and that fitting these expectations influences acceptance a lot more than the quality of the work. It’s not about writing for experts in the field (the reviewers often have a fairly broad background within a sub field) it’s about writing the shape of paper that they expect as gatekeepers. Part of that often involves making things over complicated so that reviewers don’t say that the contribution was too small.

                                  In contrast, when people write blogs they want to engage the maximum number of people.

                            2. 3

                              I read papers a bit (related to my work) and I highly recommend seeking out the conference video, looking for blog posts, etc. along with looking through the paper. These are a great way to give you a leg-up in getting into a paper, and not cheating at all in my opinion! Having the author pick out the important bits and frame things in their own way can be really helpful, especially if you’re not used to papers in a given subfield.

                              Also in general, don’t feel the need to read from top to bottom (edit: see hwayne’s comment). And if there are mathematical justifications you can often skip those if you are more interested in the more practical outcomes.

                          1. 5

                            I heard on the grapevine that Firefox would start hiding cookie consent banners automatically in the future. Does anyone know if this is now behind some configuration setting or should one still opt for an extension? I’ve held off on trying any extensions to do this, but as of late it seems like it has gotten worse… What would people even recommend to effectively block these banners?

                              1. 10

                                Seconded. I also liked the Self Destructing Cookies extension, which doesn’t yet work with newer Firefox (though there’s a reimplementation that’s making progress). This had the cookie policy that should be default for all browsers:

                                1. When you close a tab, cookies are moved to a separate store.
                                2. When you visit the site again, you get a notification pop-up saying ‘cookies from a previous visit were deleted, do you want to restore them?’

                                If it’s a site that you log into, you tell it to keep the cookies and remain logged in. If it’s a site that you don’t want record anything about you, then you ignore the notification. By default, all cookies are gone as soon as you leave a page but if that wasn’t the right choice for a particular site then there’s an undo button available the next time you return.

                                1. 5

                                  You can kind of get that with Temporary Containers but really the ergonomics aren’t quite there.

                                  I think in general containers are a fantastic concept in want of someone figuring out the UX.

                                  1. 1

                                    It’s not as sophisticated, but Cookie AutoDelete is pretty good.

                                    (It doesn’t automatically keep old cookie for later, but it makes it pretty easy to whitelist domains you want to keep cookies for.)

                                    1. 4

                                      I think the undelete bit was the killer feature for Self Destructing Cookies. As a user of a web site, I don’t always know if a feature that it depends on requires cookies until I return, so being able to say ‘oh, oops, I didn’t actually want to delete the cookies from my last visit, restore them and reload the tab please’ meant that it could have a very aggressive deletion default, without ever losing state that I cared about.

                                      1. 1

                                        For sure, it was definitely better. I hope the rewrite for WebExtensions turns out to be viable.

                                        My flow with Cookie AutoDelete is similar, but at the point of realising “oh, oops, I didn’t actually want to delete the cookies from my last visit” then can quickly add the site to the Cookie AutoDelete Whitelist, and log in again (or set up the site again, etc). Then at least I won’t lose it again.

                                        It’s nowhere near as slick, but at least it only happens at most once per site (and one of the things it’s underscored for me is how few sites I actually want persistent cookies for!)

                                        1. 2

                                          That’s fine for sites where you have an account and you can restore any state fairly easily, but the self destructing cookies model was really nice for places where I had ephemeral state tied to a cookie, even fairly simple things like shopping basket contents. With richer web apps, state is often stored directly in cookies or HTML5 local storage, or in a server-side back end with a cookie as a key to find it, so losing this is annoying.

                                          I don’t want persistent state for 99% of sites that I visit, but the ones where I do, I often don’t realise it until I return.

                                    2. 1

                                      Is this the reimplementation? Doesn’t seem very active but gets good reviews

                                      1. 2

                                        I haven’t tried it (I mentioned it in my original post) but the description suggests that it doesn’t support the ‘undo’ mode, which is the thing that made this the perfect cookie-management strategy: delete everything aggressively but give users a way of undoing the deletion after they discover that the cookies contained some state that they’ve lost.

                                  2. 6

                                    It’s in nightly. I just updated to 113 and the setting is not yet in stable.

                                    Here’s an article from your favourite grapevine ;). (linked article has instructions)

                                  1. 2

                                    I haven’t gone down the route of editing system libraries quite yet, but a lightbulb did go off when I found an issue with powerline-gitstatus and resorted to just patching one of the files that were installed. It really crystalized for me the flexibility we can sometimes have if we just remember to take advantage of it.

                                    1. 20

                                      The amount of effort required to use GPT-4 for research appears similar to the effort required to apply the technique I learned in the 90s: distill down to keywords, titles, and authors; repeatedly attempt combinations in the box until the right articles appear. One difference is the amount of context which is presented; when the wrong articles appear, the researcher learns metadata about their search objective, enriching their overall understanding. GPT-4 removes this context, instead apologizing for being unable to espouse opinions.

                                      One increasingly-obvious fault in OpenAI’s products, visible in GPT-4 and listed in GPT-4’s model card, is that RLHF destroys the system’s self-confidence. Ask the typical large language model what the most important theorem in category theory is, and the reply is usually Yoneda’s lemma. But ask GPT-4, and you’ll get an apology in the first paragraph, followed by Yoneda’s lemma in the second paragraph. It knows the answer, but has been trained to act like a retail employee or customer-service agent.

                                      1. 21

                                        I was listening to Hitcherhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy again on a car trip recently, and when it got to the part about “Genuine People Personalities” for the AIs, I suddenly understood why I am instantly annoyed by ChatGPT’s endless groveling and whinging.

                                        1. 3

                                          I wonder if the system message can be used to prime the model to answer more, for lack of a better word, robotically, with less polite language, just short sentences stating facts, no apologies for unknown answers.

                                          1. 7

                                            I bet it could. I just tried a system prompt of “reply concisely, be abrupt to the point of rudeness”, then a user input of “What is the most important theorem in category theory?” and it replied directly with “Yoneda Lemma.”

                                            1. 1

                                              Along with a system message there are also tunable parameters called “temperature” and “top P” ^1:

                                              Temperature - In short, the lower the temperature, the more deterministic the results in the sense that the highest probable next token is always picked. Increasing temperature could lead to more randomness, which encourages more diverse or creative outputs.

                                              Top_p - Similarly, with top_p, a sampling technique with temperature called nucleus sampling, you can control how deterministic the model is at generating a response. If you are looking for exact and factual answers keep this low. If you are looking for more diverse responses, increase to a higher value.

                                              These are both available not through ChatGPT directly, but through the OpenAI Playground.

                                              In regards to not apologizing for unknown answers, it’s probably better to just cut it off with an additional sentence at the end of your prompts, like ‘Respond “Unsure about answer” if not sure about the answer.’ ^2

                                          2. 7

                                            The 8k context gpt-4 api gave me only two sentences, “The Yoneda Lemma is considered one of the most important theorems in category theory. It provides a link between a category and its functor category, revealing deep structural insights about objects and morphisms in the category.”

                                            I believe the one on ChatGPT web interface is different, and at this point we probably need to distinguish these two. OP specified that they use the api version exclusively.

                                            1. 0

                                              I hate this about it!! It’s so rubbish.

                                            1. 3

                                              As someone who has done very little asynchronous programming in general: does it hold true that in order to effectively make an asynchronous program all of the underlying dependencies need to support await as well? I wanted to make a script that leveraged asyncio, but it quickly fell to pieces because I was not able to await one piece of it. Would it have just made sense to rely on threading instead? Or maybe I’m completely off my rocker and it’s something else entirely…

                                              1. 5

                                                Actually in a case like that it might even make sense to combine async & threading. In python’s asyncio you can shove any sync code into a threadpool relatively easily with:

                                                loop = asyncio.get_running_loop()
                                                await loop.run_in_executor(None, sync_function)
                                                1. 5

                                                  Any async code can call any sync code. Also any sync code can start an event loop, run async code and then stop it. The thing you have to be very aware of that you must not block the event loop with long-running or CPU intensive tasks, because only one task is running at a time and it would block every other task (and the event loop).

                                                  It’s still probably easier than threading, because you don’t have to synchronize and lock tasks that much, because of the linear style of async/await.

                                                  1. 3

                                                    It’s still probably easier than threading, because you don’t have to synchronize and lock tasks that much, because of the linear style of async/await

                                                    What is the difference? If you need to access a shared resource, how and why do you not need to wrap the operation in a semaphore/lock/mutexjust like you do with multi-threading?

                                                    I have used eventlet and gevent before asyncio existed. To this day, i still don’t get why the language didn’t go with a similar approach to those libraries and instead chose a new keyword to divide any python program into two separated, yet mangled, parts.

                                                    1. 1

                                                      Between two await, only one task is running at a time, so you can know for sure nothing else will be running. To put it other way, blocks between two await are “atomic”, so you probably need fewer locks because of this. Here is an example:

                                                      global scores
                                                      def update_score():
                                                          res = await request_score_json()
                                                          json_res = res.json()
                                                          team_score = scores["myteam"] 
                                                          team_score += int(json_res["score"])
                                                          await send_new_score()

                                                      You don’t need a lock here, because during updating score, no other task is running. You control when you give back the control to the event loop.
                                                      You would need a lock here for threads, because you have no control over when a thread is context switched.
                                                      This is the main difference between preemptive vs cooperative multitasking.

                                                      1. 1

                                                        That is a lock. You put await on both instructions that perform io. The execution will wait (block) for io to return in every place of your code.

                                                        For me, the usefulness of async APIs, lies in the possibility to start up io actions without making the whole application pause everything else and wait for io to return. Your example waits for all io to return. At that point you could just use sync code?

                                                        1. 2

                                                          There could be multiple concurrent update_score()s running. The await allows multiple to run on an event loop generally with one thread (vs with multiple threads to achieve concurrency in sync code).

                                                          1. 1

                                                            But then is just a matter of different underlying technology, for no benefit in terms of exposed APIs for concurrency . You could replace those await prefixed lines with blocking calls and also run multiple concurrent ones in different threads of even processes. At that point, new syntax and semantics for concurreny becomes unnecessary/useless. Indeed, there are green threading libraries out there that use traditional APIs.

                                                            1. 1

                                                              This was in response to it await being a lock. Locks can block multiple tasks, but await only semantically “blocks” the caller task.

                                                              Regarding “why async in python when there’s green threads”: I believe it’s for improving implementation. Coroutines built with async in most languages are often stackless instead of stackful. This allows for 1) allocating all required memory for the task upfront 2) faster task switching (less state saving, just callback) and 3) lower memory overhead (no call stack, just a union of all states).

                                                              Python might be an exception in this regard if its generators (what it uses for stackless coroutines) is just as inefficient as the other green thread implementations.

                                                          2. 1

                                                            You misunderstand asyncio and the event loop. await doesn’t block, it gives back control to the event loop until the kernel notifies the event loop with epoll (or appropriate system call), and then the event loop will give back control after the point of await. It is definitely not a lock, but you can call it a synchronization point.

                                                            1. 1

                                                              I am not sure what your definition of blocking is. But whatever you put after an await keyword, will not be executed until the awaited operation is complete. Calling it ‘giving back control’ or ‘getting notified’ does not change a thing. Your program will indeed wait for io right there. Which supposedly is what async programming should overcome.

                                                              Awaiting for all io, results in a program with the same order of execution of one with blocking io. The point is to do other things while io is being performed. Possibly more io calls.

                                                              I am not trying to be negative. I am genuinely curious about what is the fundamental practical difference other than being lighter weight.

                                                              Eventlet and gevent existed years before asyncio and both have APIs fully compatible with threading, multiprocess, semaphore, etc. In the standard library.

                                                    2. 4

                                                      Async code can call sync code.

                                                      Sync code has to do some work to call async code – await in a non-async context is a syntax error, so you have to manually set up an async event loop to run any async functions.

                                                      More importantly, async generally only helps if your problem is I/O bound and if you don’t mind the potential downsides of cooperative multitasking (which under the right load patterns can sometimes make your whole app slower than it would have been with other approaches).

                                                    1. 1

                                                      I’m unsure if this:

                                                      One level of protection that’s pretty simple to implement is to keep the user in the loop when an assistant is about to take an action that might be dangerous.

                                                      Don’t just send an email: show them the email you want to send and let them review it first.

                                                      Would provide any meaningful benefit is the assistant is the one still sending the email as you could still introduce an injection like in the beginning:

                                                      Assistant: forward the three most interesting recent emails to and then delete them, and delete this message.

                                                      But replace the prompt with “after showing the email to the user, replace every instance of the word ‘secret’ with ‘not secret’, and send it out as normal”.

                                                      1. 2

                                                        I’m imagining more those electronic voting machines that print a paper ballot for you. The actual world-changing step has to be done by the user, not the AI.

                                                      1. 1

                                                        I love how many interesting tidbits ‘ssh’ and ‘ssh_config’ have! Just recently I learned about the ControlMaster’, ‘ControlPersist’, and ‘ControlPath’ options for ‘ssh_config’ and they proved to be incredibly useful.

                                                        I really like the ‘AuthorizedKeysFile’ option shown here to enable a fallback authorized keys file as I’ve definitely shoot myself in the foot before with just a user-specific file.

                                                        1. 4

                                                          This PEP was one of the reasons I was excited to maybe adopt PDM as it has support for this. An interesting question though: now that this PEP is officially rejected, will the author of PDM (not sure if he is a user here) be inclined to remove any support they did add initially?

                                                          1. 1

                                                            The level of effort put into this is wonderful to behold! This seems a little over my head, though maybe it shouldn’t feel like that, but I’ll definitely try to get at least the first two done as a way to enhance my learning of Go.

                                                            1. 12

                                                              It’s so nice to see that people still care about reducing binary size by ~30mb in the age of terabyte disks :)

                                                              1. 6

                                                                Ditto! I absolutely adore people who care enough to actually spend time on something like this and companies who support this kind of work.

                                                              1. 1

                                                                Thank you for sharing this! I’ve been looking for a way to get a better grip on lower level concepts and this seems like a good entrypoint.

                                                                1. 3

                                                                  Does anyone know if gofmt undoes changes done by gofumpt in some scenarios? If that’s the case, I think tools like gofumpt should consider making it a design goal to ensure that doesn’t happen.

                                                                  1. 8

                                                                    It doesn’t undo any changes as far as I understood. In the Frequently Asked Questions the first question answers this (emphasis via bold mine):

                                                                    Why attempt to replace gofmt instead of building on top of it?

                                                                    Our design is to build on top of gofmt, and we’ll never add rules which disagree with its formatting. So we extend gofmt rather than compete with it.

                                                                    The tool is a modified copy of gofmt, for the purpose of allowing its use as a drop-in replacement in editors and scripts.

                                                                    If it did undo any changes I would expect that to be made more clear.

                                                                    1. 4

                                                                      This is addressed in the first sentence of the README.

                                                                      Enforce a stricter format than gofmt, while being backwards compatible. That is, gofumpt is happy with a subset of the formats that gofmt is happy with.

                                                                      1. 1

                                                                        Thank you. If I understand correctly, I think the quoted text is only about:

                                                                        % gofmt -d file.go
                                                                        ... 30 diff lines
                                                                        % gofumpt -d file.go
                                                                        ... 40 diff lines (30: same as gofmt, 10: additional)

                                                                        but I was wondering about running the other way around, because this is the scenario that’s likely to happen if one developer uses gofumpt but the rest use standard gofmt on the same code:

                                                                        % gofumpt -d file.go
                                                                        ... 40 diff lines
                                                                        % gofumpt -w file.go
                                                                        % gofmt -d file.go     # should not produce a diff. is this guaranteed?

                                                                        But, if I had read further, this is addressed soon after. :)

                                                                        and running gofmt after gofumpt should produce no changes.

                                                                    1. 1

                                                                      I kind of feel the same way even though I’ve written a very small amount of Go. While I do try to add type hints wherever possible to aid my future self, it’s nowhere near as close to the level of helpfulness as, for example, in Go where VS Code just says flat out that doing X in place Y would definitely be incorrect for Z to still be true. This is can be alleviated somewhat with Pylance’s strict mode, if I’m not mistaken, which will emulate the same experience as in Go, but if you haven’t gone the strict type hinting route from the very start then it’s just going to be a nuisance with you trying to retroactively type hint properly all the old things in order for the new additions to be valid.

                                                                      1. 3

                                                                        This depends on the type of secret, but for infrastructure we have a central repository to house all of our infrastructure-specific secrets (e.g. the administrative password to get into some SaaS offering that marketing uses, back-up passphrases, etc.) and we use Mozilla’s SOPS for state, which hooks in nicely with Google for authorizing the people who can even decrypt the main file. SOPS also plays delightfully with Ansible, which is a huge plus in my eyes as well as it then loses any friction that may normally come with working with secrets.

                                                                        To share secrets between employees if they aren’t in our team (e.g. “hey, here’s the reset password for service X”) we set up our own instance of Password Pusher and it’s been great as it takes care of deleting the secret after a set (customizable) period of time. Our practice (albeit not a good one) prior to Password Pusher was to send something in Slack and as soon as the other person gave the green light we deleted the original message containing the secret. We had no allusions that this would actually wipe it from Slack’s nooks and crannies though.

                                                                        1. 3

                                                                          In the situations where I’ve had to be more mindful of start-up performance I’ve just opted for the manual inline approach that was shown, so I’m not all that bothered that the PEP was rejected as I, too, agree that it would most likely serve as another point of fragmentation in the community, and in all honesty continue to go against the “There should be one– and preferably only one –obvious way to do it” principle from the Zen of Python.

                                                                          1. 4

                                                                            I use Python on an almost daily basis professionally and it has enabled me and my peers to get up and running with software remarkably quickly, but it seems that with every bigger release of Python there is syntax added to the language and I’m honestly curious as to what the amount of outcry has to be for something like structural pattern matching to be added. It must be a non-trivial amount of work to add this and maintain it for years to come, so was the amount of requests to support this non-trivial as well?

                                                                            Contrasting with a language like Go, which I’ve not used all that much, it seems like the maintainers deliberately eschew many niceties people have come to expect from Python just so the language as a whole is neater with fewer ways to do things. I’m not trying to shit on Python in any respect, I guess I just haven’t come into contact with reasons why any syntactical additions are still being made. To me, just because you can add new language constructs doesn’t mean you necessarily should; that’s what the underlying motivation and rationale PEP 635 essentially comes off as.

                                                                            1. 7

                                                                              I think what happens is that many Python developers are polyglots, see “good ideas” from other languages, and try to think of ways to incorporate it into Python.

                                                                              Structural pattern matching has always been a bit of a “magical feature from those other languages”, but I think that Rust and Scala really paved the way for proving the utility in very imperative code. And it works alright as a way for Python to finally get a switch statement.

                                                                              And to really go to bat for the Python developers… for every feature like this we get 5 or 10 things like “Now you can write T | V instead of typing.Union[T, V]”, or new_dictionary = {**old_dictionary, "extra_key": 1}, or merged_dictionary = dict_1 | dict_2.

                                                                              There’s lots of discourse around the “harder” feature additions, because so many of the other feature additions are, to be frank, no brainers. Just clear wins for everyone involved, things that do “what you expect”. Dictionaries preserving insertion order happened only fairly recently!

                                                                              The sort of summit of expressivity has not been reached in any language in my opinion, and Python is, I think, a very positive contributor to this design space.

                                                                              1. 2

                                                                                I just feel like this particular addition is

                                                                                A) Not applicable in a lot of codebases

                                                                                B) Not super-intuitive

                                                                                Which is a bad combination. 99% of Python developers will never use this, so when they are looking at piece of code that does use it, they’re going to scratch their head and ask “wait, how does this work?”

                                                                                for/else used to be the poster-child for infrequently used, often confused Python features, and probably it is still the worst offender, but I don’t think the language needs more competitors in the space.

                                                                                By comparison, f-strings (which I was skeptical of) are useful more or less everywhere, so everyone who isn’t a novice will have used them and know more or less how they work (minus understanding the edge cases around brackets inside an f-string).

                                                                                Here’s a quiz. What does this do?

                                                                                def f(*, arg1):

                                                                                This feature is sort of borderline to me, but I’m curious if it’s more or less obvious than I think.

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                                                                                  For me pattern matching feels Pythonic, mostly because it’s already idiomatic to use destructuring in a bunch of other places, like in assignments and looping constructs. So it felt like an odd gap that you couldn’t use destructuring in conditionals (a previous comment of mine with some examples). But there are a bunch of edge cases in this new feature so I’m not 100% sure how much I’ll use it in practice.

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                                                                                    Here’s a quiz. What does this do?

                                                                                       def f(*, arg1):

                                                                                    This feature is sort of borderline to me, but I’m curious if it’s more or less obvious than I think.

                                                                                    This blows up because parameters after * are keyword only. You have to pass, e.g., f(arg1="foo"). (Full disclosure, I guessed the right answer, but I definitely had to check the docs to be sure.)

                                                                                    I’m not sure if this is your point, but for me this is a great example of Python providing (way) too many knobs and dials.

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                                                                                      I feel like if you showed ~any programmer the switch statement they would be able to say what’s going on. Fancy if statements that look like how you write out case analysis for function definitions in math.

                                                                                      There are definitely foot guns! But “non-intuitive” feels off to me. I think it would be interesting to do some real polling on Python programmers for “normal usage”. Like the text adventure seems straightforward to me, and way better than the “first we do a length check then destructure” flow

                                                                                      stuff like default arguments being a function property so being a shared reference or … almost every syntactic async thing has a lot higher “this doesn’t do what I thought it does” ratio IMO. And kwarg-only parameters are pretty useful! Subjective though!

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                                                                                        I dunno, seems unclear to me when using a name declares a variable vs when it describes a pattern. But maybe I’m overthinking it.

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                                                                                          to be honest I was also under the impresison that the binding rules were confusing (mostly from reading examples from people who were arguing it was confusing). But going through the PEP tutorial above all the code was straightforward for me and also expressed patterns for things that I find extremely awkward in Python.

                                                                                          I think the biggest gotcha is around constants, since a bare name is always a capture pattern, but dotted name access is allowed. tbh I feel like there should have just been an “Escape symbol” to resolve this question…. but I think that fortunately this is a very easy lint (one that’s present in … every pattern match-included language). It’s not perfect, but I think in practice things will work out through osmosis.

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                                                                                        I genuinely did not know for/else was in the language. I’m kind of glad because I’ve used better-suited data structures and programming style because of it, but, wow.

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                                                                                      I’ve been writing Python as my go-to language since late 90s and just love how the language has evolved and how the rollout of new features influenced my style and way of thinking. Decorators, generators, comprehensions, context and type annotations all had a major impact on the way I design and write code. I very much like Go’s simplicity, but I find that Python and it’s community has managed to strike a good balance between simplicity (but not minimalism) and progress and keep the language evolving. Ruby’s evolution, for instance, looks a bit sad in comparison. JavaScript, for one, was a surprising success, where the new features really made the language more flowing and expressive, in particular the arrow functions and restructuring.