Topic: is a name a literal string or a symbol

topics > computer science > programming > Group: expression evaluation

data value

evaluate operator
compile-time execution
maps and rings
meaning vs. reference
meaning without reference
semantic truth; s iff p
string literals


Any name may literally stand for itself or symbolically stand for a value. This is especially clear in string literals where some symbols stand for unprintable characters such as a carriage-return. Names interpreted literally may be later evaluated but the converse is not true since names symbolizing values are processed independently of their names. Generally syntactic processing uses literal names while execution uses values. A related distinction arises when defining a description by instructions. These instructions stand for themselves instead of their execution. For instance in FORTH the ':' operator signals word definition. (cbb 5/80)
Subtopic: use vs. mention up

Quote: we mention x by using a name for x; e.g., Quine distinguished "Boston is populous" from "'Boston' is disyllabic" [»raatP_1998]
QuoteRef: louxMJ_1970 ;;12 Donagan 70: have the name "red" (second order use) and the color red.
Quote: use-mention, using a word versus mentioning the word as a literal string [»ziffP_1960]
Quote: use vs. mention--usually words are used to point to other things, but they may be used to mention themselves as the object of interest [»martAP_1990]
Quote: use vs. mention of language is the distinction between object language and metalanguage; used for linguistics and philosophy of language [»martAP_1990]
Quote: use vs. mention is like object language vs. metalanguage; first suggested by Russell [»raatP_1998]
Quote: a name is a different logical type than the thing named [»bateG_1979]
Quote: name vs. process that is named is similar to digital vs. analog
Quote: the difference between evolution and learning is similar to the different between digital and analog or name and process named [»bateG_1979]

Subtopic: sense vs. expression up

Quote: can speak of the sense of an expression A; so a word's customary sense is its indirect nominatum [»fregG_1892]

Subtopic: type vs. token up

Quote: type vs. token--can have many tokens of a sentence; each token has the same sentence-type [»martAP_1990]

Subtopic: literals need ID up

Note: literals need an ID just like objects [»cbb_1990, OK]

Subtopic: quoted expressions up

Quote: data objects in Boxer are unevaluated; like quote in Lisp but not stripped on evaluation [»diseAA_1986]
QuoteRef: browPJ10_1967 ;;620 Choice of literal brackets to prevent macro call or warning marker indicate macro call
QuoteRef: bennRK6_1968 ;;2-2 Input string to processor made of words (symbolic) and quotes (word group)
QuoteRef: bennRK6_1968 ;;4-3 General quote form by prefixing quote mark with a quote label word eg '( a ') is quote a

Subtopic: name vs. binding up

Quote: an identifier is a symbol or name for a variable, type, procedure, etc. within the scope of its declaration
QuoteRef: grisRE_1972 ;;34 when specifying a variable can use *variable to indicate don't evaluate until execute pattern search
Quote: in Smalltalk, SomeName returns itself instead of its binding; helped explain value/thing distinction to kids [»shocJF9_1979]
QuoteRef: cbb_1973 ;;11/30/73 1 can be either a symbol or a value
QuoteRef: cbb_1973 ;;1/5/75 Can always see symbol as static (name) or active (value)

Subtopic: compile vs. execute up

Quote: in Forth, ':' compiles words instead of executing them [»moorCH6_1974]
QuoteRef: browPJ10_1967 ;;621 Can use evaluated or as is arg and can use deliminators in ml1 macros

Related Topics up

Group: data value   (19 topics, 433 quotes)
Group: naming   (32 topics, 789 quotes)

Topic: evaluate operator (7 items)
Topic: compile-time execution (17 items)
Topic: maps and rings (15 items)
Topic: meaning vs. reference (49 items)
Topic: meaning without reference (31 items)
Topic: semantic truth; s iff p (34 items)
Topic: string literals
(3 items)

Updated barberCB 7/04
Copyright © 2002-2008 by C. Bradford Barber. All rights reserved.
Thesa is a trademark of C. Bradford Barber.