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From "Ola Berg" <ola.b...@ports.se>
Subject Re: [lang] what about mutable BigInteger etc.
Date Fri, 27 Dec 2002 11:16:48 GMT

On 2002-12-27 at 03:59 Henri Yandell wrote:

> On Fri, 27 Dec 2002, Ola Berg wrote:
> > I think the word "mutable" leads wrong. The number in itself isn't
> > mutable, it is the object that is told to hold a completely different
> > number.
> 
> Doesn't this depend on the implementation? Why wouldn't they be
> implemented as Numbers themselves and not containers?

They could and should be implemented as Numbers, so that you can use them as Numbers in any
generic calculation, just like a variable. But they are not _numbers_.

Note the locase, I am talking about the conceptual object here, not the implementation object.
A number is a literal in the language, and a fixed entity in the abstract world of mathemathics,
and you cannot change 2 to become 3. 

Saying that a number is mutable is whacky. Saying that the contents of a container can be
changed is sane.

No other changes in implementation or how the object can be used is implied. Just wanting
to make the name resemble the (my ;-) mind

I think would be less confusing with LongValueHolder than MutableLong, since a value itself
cannot be altered.

> MutableXxx matches the (hidden) Sun API in java.math.

Good they let that be hidden. It is a very funny name to me.

But really no big deal. I think that most people will understand what we mean. 

My pro-argument in favor of calling it MutableLong would in fact be that I think it is a _funny_
name. But I might have a strange sense of humour.

> Just my tuppence,

Me to.

/O




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