# A mathematical foundation of reflexion?

Laurent Martelli martelli@iie.cnam.fr
14 Jan 2000 01:41:33 +0100

```>>>>> "Billy" == btanksley  <btanksley@hifn.com> writes:

>> From: Laurent Martelli [mailto:martelli@iie.cnam.fr] Subject: Re:
>> A mathematical foundation of reflexion?

>> >>>>> "Massimo" == Massimo Dentico <m.dentico@teseo.it> writes:

Massimo> [remember that a colon definition is a procedure
Massimo> difinition] As a metric I did some analysis of code
Massimo> examples Chuck has provided.  The numbers I find most
Massimo> interesting is that the length of the average colon
Massimo> definition is 44 characters.  The length of the longest
Massimo> colon definition was 70 characters.  This is a sign that he
Massimo> has factored, factored, factored.  How big are the average
Massimo> definitions in your code?  Smaller definitions are easier
Massimo> to code, easier to test, etc.

>> And harder to understand when there are too many of them. It is
>> easier to understand a program made of a single 10 lines function
>> than one made of 10 function of one line. But of course, a
>> program made of 10 function of 10 lines is easier to understand
>> than one made of one function of 100 lines. For most people I
>> think.

Billy> We can argue for a long time about trivial problems, but it
Billy> only really matters when the problem's nontrivial.  Chuck
Billy> Moore claims that he can write any program in less than 1K of
Billy> code.

Any ? Has he invented some sort of ultimate compression algorithm that
can compress *any* file into less than 1K ?

Billy> His VLSI CAD program is the only major program I've seen, and
Billy> it's VERY impressive.

Billy> That's a short track record, but an impressive one.  It
Billy> indicates that it might be worth listening to him and giving
Billy> him the benefit of the doubt.

He may have some interesting answers to certain problems. But I just
doubt that Forth answers all the questions. In fact, I think that some
problems have no practical solutions, and that any design choise is
arbitrary.

--
Laurent Martelli
martelli@iie.cnam.fr

```