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Thomas Lauer wrote:

You know your way around, know how to deal with a .lua script that seems
to have a bug but is in fact correct Idle. So for you, this small
difference is not a big deal.

What if one of your users decides they need an extension which is not already supported in Idle? You can see how this kind of thing might lead to the same issue, no? Thus, you are not actually solving the problem.

Many other people I have worked with over the years need hand-holding on
a scale that is difficult to comprehend for Real Programmers [tm].

I think the members of this mailing list, and the Lua community in general do an excellent job of helping new users with their problems. Why not take advantage of this? It seems like everything you are trying to do here is in competition with Lua (I realize this is probably not your intention), when you really should be working with Lua.

In an ideal world, I'd do just that. But Idle is for real people who
want something simple but powerful. Given that most real people have a
strained relationship with user manuals and documentation I just think
that this approach won't work well in the long run. A user who's faced
with a completely new language probably doesn't want to search bits and
pieces of the manuals from here and there.

This sounds like it will be a pain in the butt to maintain.

One thing to keep in mind, most of your green users (even the ones that will eventually become 'real programmers') do not learn to program by reading documentation. They learn by example. I think this is where you should be focusing your efforts.