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# Re: New XT release

 Subject: Re: New XT release From: "G. Ken Holman" Date: Wed, 21 Apr 1999 18:37:35 -0700

```At 99/04/21 12:46 -0500, Paul Prescod wrote:
>> [G. Ken Holman]
>> >You can calculate and bind values to variables (a bit of a misnomer since
>> >they can't vary!) within a given (let) scope, you can bind a fixed
value to
>> >a top level variable, but you can't change the value of a variable once
>> bound.
>[Frank Christoph]
>> I can't resist replying to your appalling suggestion that "variable" is a
>> misnomer here.
>
>> If I write, for example,
>>
>> (define x 6)
>>
>> then I am saying that 1) x is a DSSSL variable, and hence it varies over
>> the set of DSSSL values, and 2) its _value_ happens to be the constant, 6.
>
>There is something too subtle for me to follow there. x does not vary.

5x + 4y + z = 17
6x - 2y + z = 6
2x + 3y - z = 4

Wasn't these problems called "3 equations with 3 variables" in Ontario
schools?  In this case the values are, indeed, constants, but I thought the
placeholders themselves were called "variables".

But now that I actually write this down, I remember also calling these
problems "3 equations with 3 unknowns", so I wonder if I'm misremembering
the phrase "3 equations with 3 variables" ... but this recollection was the
particular reason why I was so ready to accept Frank's definition of
"variable".

None of my DSSSL students ever supported the use of the term "variable" the
way that Frank did in his note.  We were all of the opinion it was a misnomer.

.......... Ken

--
G. Ken Holman                  mailto:gkholman@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Crane Softwrights Ltd.           http://www.CraneSoftwrights.com/s/
Box 266, Kars, Ontario CANADA K0A-2E0  +1(613)489-0999  (Fax:-0995)
Website: XSL/XML/DSSSL/SGML services outline,  XSL/DSSSL shareware,
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Next instructor-led XSL Training:                   WWW8:1999-05-11

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