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Discussion on: How readable is using pseudo-code instead of normal human language?

curtisfenner profile image
Curtis Fenner

I don't think the email example is an effective way to communicate. Here's what I think is a much nicer form:

  1. If you are able to go and are interested, please join me
  2. If you are interested but unable to go, I can share my summary later.
  3. Otherwise, just ignore this.

Using jargon like && is not clearer. People, even programmers, are used to reading plain language, not a mess of symbols.

The reason we don't code in English (or any other human Language) is because it's not precise enough. Yet mathematics, a discipline obsessed with precision, does most of their communication in mostly prose. You can write using English to be precise and concise without resorting to symbols and notation.

It's also significantly cleaned up by "refactoring" the duplicated conditions. Writing good English takes effort, just like writing good code does ("I would have written you a shorter letter, but I hadn't the time")

voidjuneau profile image
Juneau Lim Author • Edited on

I can't thank you enough for the elaborate comment.
Honestly, this makes me quite shameful, however, I think I have to keep it in my heart.

My frivolous excuse for && was that they were my friend from school, and we've learnt only Python and Java in school so far. It would be a very little bit better if it was JS. Or not. :-(
Still, I am aware that I often write horrible run-on sentences and the main purpose was that avoid those. I am trying to use '.' and ',' whenever seems appropriate. However, my writings get bad really quickly, and even I can't "decryption" it many times.
I should agree that numbering would be a much better option.

I also agree that there must be a reason that others don't do it that way. Probably that is a part of the reason I love Mathematics.

For the "duplicated conditions", I have no idea why but I wanted to do it in a redundant way, just like I would do it when I actually talk. Probably it's not good even for verbal communication as well. I'm guilty.

If I may confess to you a bit of TMI, as you might be able to guess, this is not all of my problems.
Another one which is not the last one is that I often say a bad joke with lack of context provided.
I'm often tempted to play a person who totally misunderstands the situation, or who have a really bad mindset.
However, many times, I fail to explain that, "It's not my real stance and I am just kidding". (<- see this horrible sentence <- guilty)

Another TMI confess is that: Language related courses have been always my weak point since I was a little kid. Part of the reason I do blogging is to practice writing, but many times I feel sorry for making my readers horrible texts.

ps. btw, this comment cost me almost an hour and it's still not looking good. I'm that bad.

curtisfenner profile image
Curtis Fenner

Writing is hard. I was lucky enough to have honors language class in middle School and high school which gave brutal feedback. Feedback can be uncomfortable but it can help a lot! You just need a lot of practice, and to collect a lot of constructive criticism over a lot of time. Blogging is a great way to get better!