[plt-scheme] Why do folks implement *dynamically* typed languages?

From: Anton van Straaten (anton at appsolutions.com)
Date: Tue Jun 5 00:19:36 EDT 2007

Richard Cleis wrote:
> In 1957, during a scene in Bridge on the River Kwai, the commander of  
> the prisoners is explaining that it would be illegal for them to  
> attempt to escape from the prisoner of war camp (because they were  
> ordered to surrender) :
> ...
> Shears: I'm sorry sir. I didn't quite follow you. You mean you intend  
> to uphold the letter of the law, no matter what it costs.
> Nicholson: Without law, Commander, there is no civilization.
> Shears: You just took my point. Here, there is no civilization.
> Nicholson: Then, we have the opportunity to introduce it. I suggest  
> that we drop the subject of escape.
> ...
> Are we 'ordered' into software prisons that have too much freedom?   Do 
> we choose type systems to introduce a higher level of  civilization?  
> Are we trying to escape to other programming paradigms?

The point that Nicholson misses is that in human societies, laws are 
only a civilizing force when there's a fair amount of discretion in 
their interpretation, observance, and enforcement.  Something that 
fully-static type systems could learn from...


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