[r-t] Unprinciple extent!

Alexander Holroyd holroyd at math.ubc.ca
Fri Jul 15 23:08:56 UTC 2011

But simplicity is a matter of opinion.  I don't think one should try to 
legislate based on it.

In the particular question at issue here, there are some obvious extreme 
cases: almost everyone agrees that I Can't Believe It's Not Plain Bob 
Minor is best thought of as Plain Bob, and that Cambridge is not best 
thought of as Original with many different calls.

But there will always be grey areas where reasonable people will disagree. 
For a real-life example, when one first learns standard treble dodging 
methods, one normally thinks of them as whole methods.  But at some point 
in learning to ring spliced minor, for example, one finds it's better to 
think of over works and under works, and names for individual methods 
become a distraction.  Exactly where this point comes differs from one 
individual to another.  Is hopeless to try to say definitively which is 
the simpler way to think of a particular method or set of methods.

> Graham: "Yes - that's why I wrote shortest/simplest. It probably should 
> just be simplest. If the method is too short, the frequency and number 
> of calls adds unnecessary complexity"
> Philip: You can argue both ways, and indeed is this compatible with your
> statement? How many people break Stedman down into chunks of Erin and 
> Bastow?

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