RE: Rule of Least Power

After some study, I interpret it in terms of pragmatics as a special case of Grice's Maxims. 
That is likely not the intent but the fit appears to be good.  Since this is now a published finding, 
I don't expect a review, but casual readers may find the references illuminating.

-----Original Message-----
From: []
Sent: Tuesday, March 07, 2006 9:37 AM
Subject: Rule of Least Power

Last month a reference to the "Rule of Least Power" appeared in some AC-Member emailing and, since I found it pretty interesting, I gave it some exposure in Chevron.  I regret to tell you that what response it got was of a sort that you would probably consider "unintended consequences".  That is, the principle was applied to support positions that were probably not really what you had in mind when you formulated it.  In particular, not a single comment that it provoked had anything whatsoever to do with declarative languages.

In general, it seems to me that the thrust of your intention is to encourage the use of declarative languages.  My personal experience with this, for what it is worth, has not been positive -- in the sense that I have not been able to get any substantial uptake among my user community other than a few isolated enthusiasts.  It seems that, in practice, the learning curve tends to be too high.  In addition, there is a tendency for the scope of what is being done to creep, and then you either start using some extremely obscure constructions into the declarative language or you give up and re-do it using a complete, procedural language.

Frankly, I used to try to follow the Rule of Least Power and I gave up. 

Received on Tuesday, 7 March 2006 15:46:09 UTC