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Article:
  What I Hate About Your Programming Language
Subject:   C, C++, Java, maybe others - zeroth element arrays
Date:   2003-05-14 08:46:50
From:   anonymous2
Response to: C, C++, Java, maybe others - zeroth element arrays

I can't imagine *not* using zero-based arrays. Why waste a perfectly good digit?
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Showing messages 1 through 6 of 6.

  • C, C++, Java, maybe others - zeroth element arrays
    2003-05-14 09:29:51  anonymous2 [View]

    I will assume your response was *not* tongue-in-cheek. (I posted the message you replied to.)

    Are you suggesting that *not* using zero means we may run out of digits? Ridiculous. Zero is not an element number - it is an offset.

    This is an example of bending the humans to the machine, rather than bending the machine to the humans. IMHO, a fundamental mistake in the approach.
    • C, C++, Java, maybe others - zeroth element arrays
      2003-05-14 09:55:38  anonymous2 [View]

      The "Why waste a perfectly good digit?" bit was tongue-in-cheek.

      But I've been programming so long I really can't imagine not using zero. It's second nature to me now.
      • C, C++, Java, maybe others - zeroth element arrays
        2003-05-14 10:54:13  anonymous2 [View]

        why arrays indexed from zero? cos everybody is used to them. maybe if we all started indexing arrays from 1 back in the day it'd seem sensible, but it has become convention. i'd find it weird if i moved to a new language and found the arrays indexed from 1, it'd spongle all my for-loop logic & annoy me every time i forgot it.
        • There's a zeroth element?
          2003-05-14 13:08:17  anonymous2 [View]

          Maybe I'm backwards, but I rarely use the zeroth element. I do know that C and its pointer arithmetic is why there is a zeroth element. But unless the problem absolutely requires it, I just ignore it like a bit of grissle on my steak.
        • C, C++, Java, maybe others - zeroth element arrays
          2003-05-14 14:39:09  anonymous2 [View]

          Naah, you don't really want me to reply with a list of languages that do suport arrays starting 'at one' do you:)
          Don't be worried if you ever encounter one though, those languages do not support for-loop logic either.
          You'll indeed need an all new logic:
          the first is in position one,
          the second is in position two,
          ...
          the Nth is in position N.

          Hey, I really do like C, but not really for business processing.
          • C, C++, Java, maybe others - zeroth element arrays
            2003-07-06 00:49:55  anonymous2 [View]

            FORTRAN and MATLAB both index from 1.

            I migrated from MATLAB to Numerical Python, just to get back to the sweet, nourishing 0 indexing.