[PD] what distinguishes a numeric symbol as an argument?

Frank Barknecht fbar at footils.org
Thu May 31 23:29:11 CEST 2007

Matteo Sisti Sette hat gesagt: // Matteo Sisti Sette wrote:

> I always thought that the two following conjectures were true:
> conjecture 1 - any given message output by any PD object can always be 
> reproduced by writing it down literally in a message box

Pd's patch format doesn't know about numeric symbols: Every number
written in any object or message of a patch is just that: a number. 

> conjecture 2 - a PD message is simply a human-readable string that you can 
> always "see" by for example [print]ing it, or prepending a "set" and viewing 
> it in a message box, and two messages that "appear" identical are identical.

Yes, this conjecture fails for some kinds of Pd messages. One is the
symbol-float: it's not possible to "see" the difference to a
float-float. Also pointers, which are in Pd for ages (since 1996 or
so), are non-printable in full: You can print their data, but not the
pointer itself. Even if two pointers share the same data, they don't
need to be the same pointers.

> Now I see both conjectures are wrong (kinda disappointed since I loved them) 
> but once I assume that, and thank to your explanation, everything is clear 
> and coherent.
> A desired message can always be generated using a makefilename or something, 
> and the difference between different cases can be detected - though all this 
> in a less immediate way than I thought.

Acutally except for numeric symbols and for the "whitespace symbols"
[keyname] sometime generates one doesn't meet "strange symbols" a lot
in real life, so it's not a real issue in practice.

 Frank Barknecht                 _ ______footils.org_ __goto10.org__

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