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bindings and assignments (was: Re: continuations)

Vadim Nasardinov wrote:

> If you don't use the "final" keyword, then the variable can be
> reassigned (in the set! sense).
> Does that qualify as a syntactic distinction?

I'd forgotten about this use of "final" (maybe because I don't find
the pun quite so evident).  Yes, that would qualify as a syntactic

Two related, necessarily somewhat vague, questions:

1. What do the main Java texts/books say about this?  Do they (a)
emphasize its existence, (b) provide useful guidelines on its use and,
(c) most importantly, use it frequently in their own sample code so
programmers will imbibe this discipline?

2. Do practicing programmers use it much?  If, for instance, you were
to search through your own code base, or libraries from Sun, or code
on Alphaworks, would this appear often?  (I could search this myself,
except that I want only this use of final, not the one for classes,
and I don't have a Java parser handy to mock this up.)