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Re: tail call proposal [was: Re: tail recursion proposal]
From: Kent Pitman <email@example.com>
Date: Thu, 8 Jan 98 23:48:49 EST
Date: Thu, 8 Jan 1998 22:06:30 -0500
From: Stephen Adams <firstname.lastname@example.org>
I think it is poor form to use the term "tail recursion" as
in general it is undecidable if a tail call is recursive.
The fact that this term keeps cropping up makes me favour
the "pessimization" explanation.
Although I happen to like the "pessimization" explanation myself, I don't
advocate it just because it avoids this confusion; I think the other wording
could be repaired to avoid the confusion by careful replacement of some uses
of "tail recursion" with "tail call", etc. and would have no problem about
suggestions of that kind from those who prefer the other explanation.
The only occurance of `tail recursion' in the proposal is as part
of the term `proper tail recursion'. Recursion has to be mentioned
somewhere; in the absence of recursion tail-call pessimization is
not a serious restriction.
(I did use `tail recursion proposal' as the subject line of the
original message. Mea culpa.)