On 8/12/2017 9:12 AM, MRAB wrote:
On 2017-08-12 09:54, Marko Rauhamaa wrote:
Jussi Piitulainen <jussi.piitulai...@helsinki.fi>:

Rustom Mody writes:
[ My conjecture: The word ‘comprehension’ used this way in English is
meaningless and is probably an infelicious translation of something
which makes sense in German]

From a Latin word for "taking together", through Middle French,

Metaphors' galore:

    English: understand < stand under something

Its etymology is here:


    French:  comprendre < take something in
    German:  verstehen  < stand in front of something
    Finnish: ymmärtää   < surround something

all mean the same thing.

I really don't think that "comprehension" in English, in the manner used for Python set manipulation, is equivalent at all to the English word "understand". For the Python comprehension, the word is more related to "complete", or "exhaustive", as in "comprehensive" (covering all possibilities). While a comprehensive explanation of something might lead to an understanding of that something, teaching is not really a requirement of being comprehensive. Being comprehensive is sometimes a good attribute of teaching, or understanding, however. One might think they understand something, but they only understand in part, they might not have a comprehensive understanding. An example of this is Newtonian physics gives an understanding of various physical phenomena, but Einstein's theory of relativity shows that Newtonian physics is only a partial understanding, not a comprehensive one. And maybe someday there'll be a theory that demonstrates that relativity is only a partial understanding as well (someone chime in if that is already true!).


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