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** and ++

I would like to know if it would cause anyone any serious problems if

	(a) the variable "++" went away (when was the last time you
	    used it?  Do you even know what it means?)

	(b) the variable "**" was renamed (to "##", for example).

I'm contemplating an incompatible change to the read-eval-print loop
along these lines.  As some of you may have noticed, ++ and ** present
some very serious scoping problems - there's no way to use them as global
variable names because the read-eval-print loop clobbers them quite

Please give separate answers to these two questions.  Please do not
broadcast your answers to T-Users; respond directly to me.  If you
think you have something of general interest, tell me and I'll forward
to T-Users or T-Discussion.