I would have expected this question to have been long closed and gone by now (9 hours and even on the HNQ list)... am I wrong to assume that this is badly offtopic?

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  • IMO no, it's not on topic, though it is interesting. Closed now, don't really think it could be reworded to a UX question--there's a programmers.se question for a reason. – Ben Brocka Apr 21 '15 at 13:42

I think you're probably right.

I tend to be pretty liberal with broad questions, especially if they are outside the bread-and-butter scope of digital website/app UX.

In this case, I decided not to vote it close because I think there is an underappreciated link between UX and programming language design.

Something like the assignment operator seems very humble, but the selection of assignment character is a great example of constrained UX design: how does one choose a character that conveys the semantics of "equals", is universally available on physical keyboards, and avoids (or embraces) the overloading of assignment vs equality.

Anyway, I do think you're right, but that's why i chose to keep it open.

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It's not so much language design as syntax design. If we keep in mind that not all UI is GUI, but there's also VUI and NUI, we'll quickly reach CLI, which is definitely a kind of UI. And 90% of CLI design is about designing the syntax. So yes, I think that it's on-topic. (I happen to have voted to close it because its basic premise was false, but that's beside the point :) ).

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  • Agree it's syntax design! – tohster Apr 21 '15 at 15:18

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