[racket-dev] P4P: A Syntax Proposal

From: Jay McCarthy (jay.mccarthy at gmail.com)
Date: Wed Jul 28 14:31:10 EDT 2010

At first I thought, how is this different than Honu?

If this isn't a reader, I don't see it being fundamentally different
from Honu. (Many of the same ideas are recreated, actually. The macro
slack term, for example, is exactly what Jon does.)

I think there is a place for a non-sexp reader like the @ reader, but
optimized for something other than text. But I don't like P4P's ad-hoc
set of special keywords like "defvar:" etc rather than a uniform rule.
If the parser has to know about these, then P4P is not extensible in
the same way as the sexp or @ readers.

A constructive suggestion: treat a trailing : as a special parser cue,
treating {s specially, taking the meaningful indentation ideas, etc.


On Wed, Jul 28, 2010 at 11:45 AM, Shriram Krishnamurthi <sk at cs.brown.edu> wrote:
> I've been vexed for a while about parenthetical syntax: I love it,
> appreciate what it offers, but also recognize that no amount of
> teaching or arguing alters how people perceive it.  With the switch to
> Racket, and our continuing interest in user interface issues, I
> believe it is wise to consider an optional alternate syntax.
> I finally had a breakthrough last weekend on how to create a syntax
> that may be more palateable without losing the essence of
> parenthetical syntax.  As a preview, it does incorporate indentation,
> but in a good way.  You'll see.
> Feedback welcome.  The most important is whether you spot any flaws
> regarding predictable parsing.
> Here's a *non-permanent* URL where you can learn more:
>  http://www.cs.brown.edu/~sk/tmp/P4P/
> Shriram
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Jay McCarthy <jay at cs.byu.edu>
Assistant Professor / Brigham Young University

"The glory of God is Intelligence" - D&C 93

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