I certainly agree that PAREN! has got to go, but I have some reservations about GROUP!:
- it is too general a term for this usage
- it has too many other meanings in conversation
- unlike BLOCK, the phrase “group of code” just doesn’t roll trippingly off the tongue for me
So I would like to propose the following alternate choices, in reverse order of my happiness with them:
All still better than GROUP, all work fairly well before “of code” and “of data”. But IMO they are not quite good enough …
From Wikipedia: “A wedge is … one of the six classical simple machines. It can be used to separate two objects or portions of an object, lift up an object, or hold an object in place.”
Paraphrasing, one can easily imagine a WEDGE! “lifting up” some code or data, or “holding in place” some.
And a WEDGE! in a path does separate the path from the code/data inside the ()s.
I am not super happy about the niceness of the phrases “wedge of code” and “wedge of data”, but I am happier with them than with their “group” variants.
Firstly, “chunk of code” and “chunk of data” are at least as good as their “block” variants, so big win there.
Secondly, consider its definitions:
- as a noun, it means “a thick, solid piece of something” – pretty good!
- as a verb, in North America at least, it means “to divide something into chunks” – maybe not perfect, but not too too bad
- as a verb, in psychology (or linguistic analysis!!!), it means “to group together (connected items or words) so that they can be stored or processed as single concepts” – almost ridiculously perfect!
Thirdly (and this is the least important argument), in some ways, CHUNK! is actually better than BLOCK!. The only thing “block” has over it is that it already is an accepted term in computer science. But I can easily imagine some CS pioneer in the bygone days choosing “chunk” instead of “block” to describe his set of code units, and if that had happened nobody would today think of “block” as a nice term for it, at least in some of its definitions: as a noun, “an obstacle to normal progress”, or as a verb, “to make flow impossible”.
I am happy to hear about anything I have failed to consider here, and will gladly bow to the majority opinion.