Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Lambdas no more

When I was first learning Python I loved it all. It was a breath of fresh air. So easy, so powerful, and so uplifting. Python solved so many problems on a project I was doing that we switched from Java to Python because work I anticipated would take me 45 days in Java I managed to do in 90 minutes of Python. And this was my first real Python effort!

So everything was great, right?


Lambdas just plain escaped me. Experience in Java, Perl, PHP, Foxpro and ColdFusion left me unprepared for them. Took me ages to grok it. Finally after several weeks of tooling around with them, it clicked one marvelous day.

For a while I had happy fun with Lambdas. They were so cute. I could minimize my code a bit and could hang with awesome Pythonistas and share quips with Lisp programmers. Not that I knew any Lisp programmers, but if I did know them then I could talk about Lambdas too.

However, I quickly found myself resorting back to the 'standard' Python function/method way of doing things. In a nutshell, I found it much easier to read my code. Comments were much more clear. And the time it took to write out a couple extra lines of code wasn't all that bad.

Look, I'm really lazy, and I hate writing extra lines of code. Yet I think in the long run avoiding lambdas is worth it. Sometimes concise != good.

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