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From Jonathan Revusky <>
Subject Re: comparing monetary value
Date Thu, 17 Oct 2002 14:11:04 GMT
On Thursday 17 October 2002 05:23 am, Daniel Dekany wrote:
> Thursday, October 17, 2002, 2:22:14 AM, Geir Magnusson Jr. wrote:
> > On 10/16/02 3:19 PM, "Tim Colson" <> wrote:
> >> Note: seems fair to disclose that Jonathan, to paraphrase the FreeMarker
> >> website, "rewrote the core of FreeMarker". Also, I noticed that Daniel
> >> is heavily active on the FM-DEV list. It puzzles me, but I will not
> >> speculate on why these gents are so worked up about having this feature
> >> in Velocity, since by Jonathan's own explanation, it already exists in
> >> the Freemarker template engine which both chaps seem to prefer.
> >
> > Yes, I too wonder why Jonathan and Daniel are so worked up about this.
> <OT>
> Could you please stop this "Jonathan and Daniel" thing... It such a
> waffle. If someone wonder, I tell you why I'm here: Simply, I heard
> that Jonathan is here, and I was Velocity list reader in the pre-FM
> 2.x times, and I was curious what will happen now. And I just can't
> stop myself to reply when I see something nonsense. It has nothing to
> do with the fact that I'm involved in FM. What's then? I don't get
> payment for FM users...
> </OT>
> So... returning to the essence...
> I don't understand why are you so reluctant about decimals. (Well,
> frankly, I have an idea, but I don't tell it again.) What are your
> counter arguments? (I ask you because you are the leader developer
> here, AFAIK.)
> To prevent needles communication, here are a few counter-arguments,
> and why are they invalid (IMO). I don't say here that you say these
> counter-arguments.
> 1.
> - Decimals inherently problematic because of the rounding
> complications (1.49999999999999 and such things).
> - Yes, but decimals are existing in the real-life. Is this a good
> logic when someone does not solve something because the solution is
> not trivial? Obviously it does not make sense. Also, exactly because
> it is not a trivial topic, it is better if Velocity solves this, than
> leave individuals to develop tools for it.
> 2.
> - It would complicate/distort the syntax.
> - I don't think so. The only point where it touches the syntax is that
> you can write constants like 1.5. But it is just a little extension of
> the syntax, right? Also, it is such an obvious thing.
> 3.
> - It would complicate/distort the semantic.
> - From the viewpoint of designer it would *simplify* the semantic.
> Everyday people find it natural that he can use decimals. Integers and
> decimals are not separated so strictly in the brain of non-programmer.
> They are just all numbers. What they don't find natural is that
> 90/100=0 (since it is nonsense), or that they can't compare two
> numbers, because one of them is not integer.
> 4.
> - Velocity should solve number formatting then.
> - It is cleanly an MVC view task, right? So it is the task of
> Velocity. Anyway, you must solve it, wether you like it or not, and
> now you are forced to solve it with custom tools. Not to mention that
> number formatting issues are existing even if you support integers
> only (e.g. someone may use grouping when display integers.) A standard
> tool is a possible solution.
> 5.
> - We just discuss that we will develop a standard tool...
> - That's OK for solving the formatting problem, but in fact it has
> nothing to do with the question (i.e. supporting decimals or not).
> Operators still will not work (90/100 = 0, relational operators don't
> work...). I know, you can use tools for do these things, but this in
> itself is not a counter-argument... maybe you can say that it makes
> decimals +0 in this field. However, I would disagree then: would not
> it be much better if 1/2 is simply 0.5?

Well, you see, the people who think that 1/2 is 0.5 do not understand 
model-view separation properly. ;-)

> 6.
> - Designers needs only integers
> - I don't think so, but that's a somewhat subjective question. Also, I
> guess the number of requests means that it is not that uncommon thing
> that someone need decimals. But even if they need it 1 times per 1000
> year (I doubt), in itself it is again a +0 argument.
> So the main point is that simply I don't see a reason *against*
> decimals (while I and many other uses see reasons *for* decimals). Why
> would be that harmful?
> So, what are your *counter-arguments* against decimals?

I doubt you'll get an answer, Daniel.

I hate to be the one to break it to you, but it looks like the debate is over. 

The war is over. We won... :-)

This is demonstrated by all the people coming out of the woodwork telling us 
to shut up -- while making absolutely no attempt to answer any of these 
points on a technical level.

It's pretty sad really... :-(

Jonathan Revusky
FreeMarker-Velocity comparison doc
Velocity->FreeMarker template conversion utility

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