RegExp are great fun if you’re an Abstract Mathematician, or mildly masochistic.
For the rest of us, it’s silly to work on them without using something like this:
When we teach regexps, are we aiming for students to:
- Become experts in typing?
- Have 20/20 eyesight?
- Be non-dyslexic – dyslexia is for failures, who’ll never get a job anyway?
…or do we want them:
- Learning the effect of each different rule in regexp?
- Experimenting with regexps?
- Discovering how regexp rules combine, and which take precedence?
- Improving their debugging skills?
- Using computers realistically to do the things computers are great at, while students focus on the planning, process, and implementation that humans excel at?
Not that I have any strong opinions here, or anything…