Parenthesis welcome

Hans Bezemer thebeez at
Wed Oct 23 12:23:30 EDT 2013

On Wednesday 23 October 2013, discussion-request at 
> Message: 1
> Date: Tue, 22 Oct 2013 13:01:10 -0300
> From: Werner Almesberger <werner at>
> Subject: vade retro Pascal - redundant parentheses revisited
> To: "English Qi Hardware mailing list - support, developers,	use cases
> 	and fun" <discussion at>
> Message-ID: <20131022160110.GF1292 at ws>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii
> [ Came across a security-related article that made me think of an
>   old and constant gripe of mine. Here's my rant, somewhat off-topic. ]
> I've been on a crusade against redundant parentheses for a long time.
> They often make it hard to read other people's work and obscure the
> programmer's intentions.
On the contrary: this kind of "beautification" makes it harder to read a 
program without a C manual beside you - and since it is all compiled, the 
execution speed doesn't suffer. 

It also protects you from accidental errors, since it's crystal clear what you 
mean. Even if the C standard would change, it would not affect my code.

It is also a sign that the programmer has no intention to use my ignorance in 
order to install a backdoor.

Not that I'm too affected by this discussion, since I mostly write Forth. And 
since that one uses RPN, there are not parenthesis (at least not for that 

So, for practical purposes I'm all for extra parenthesis. It shows intent and 
consequently makes my life a lot easier. The rest is academic - much like the 
bishops who discussed how many angels fit on the top of a pin.

Hans Bezemer
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