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Re: Replace and ReplaceAll -- simple application
*To*: mathgroup at smc.vnet.net
*Subject*: [mg106123] Re: Replace and ReplaceAll -- simple application
*From*: Richard Fateman <fateman at cs.berkeley.edu>
*Date*: Sat, 2 Jan 2010 05:04:36 -0500 (EST)
*References*: <hhkjce$5aq$1@smc.vnet.net>
Bill Rowe wrote:
...
>
> Do you have some definition for "bug" other than performance in
> a manner different than documented?
Yes.
> That is, failure of any software to do what a user expects is
> certainly not a bug if that is what the software is documented
> to do.
False.
Here's why. By your definition, no program has a bug if the programmer
asserts that the program, by virtue of being written in a high-level
language, is its own readable documentation. Therefore anything that
the program does is documented by its own code and therefore is not a bug.
or in the immortal words of Peewee Herman "I meant to do that".
>
> The key problem here is a novice user of Mathematica might think
> of using replacement rules as doing mathematics.
Maybe he was confused by the title
"Mathematica -- A System for Doing Mathematics", and thought that
Mathematica was a system for doing mathematics.
That simply
> isn't the case.
Apparently you thought that Mathematica was "A system for doing
rule-based syntactic transformations on FullForm expressions which may
or may not correspond to what is displayed"
And since replacing one thing with another is
> not mathematics, insisting the result makes sense mathematically
> simply isn't a realistic expectation.
TaDa. I couldn't have expressed it better myself. Insisting that the
results of a transformation is mathematically consistent, "isn't a
realistic expectation."
Which, in my view, demonstrates the existence of a bug.
I suppose one could try to determine who is right by a survey, or ask
people in the street what they think.
RJF
>
>
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