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Re: diffutils 2.8.1 ISO C90 compliance patch

From: Paul Edwards
Subject: Re: diffutils 2.8.1 ISO C90 compliance patch
Date: Wed, 15 Nov 2006 19:12:55 +1100

From: "Paul Jarc" <address@hidden>
> >> POSIX facilities can make some text processing jobs
> >> significantly easier.  
> >
> > I don't know what you're talking about there,
> For example, it saves the user of diff3 the trouble of diffing each
> pair of files.

Yes, if you're willing to write non-portable code.

> >> If that isn't *enough* reason for you personally, you're free to
> >> write your own program that doesn't require POSIX.  But no one else
> >> is under any obligation to do it for you.
> >
> > I already have.  I posted the update to make it C90 compliant
> > already.
> Yes, but there is still the effort of ongoing maintenance to consider.
> The diffutils maintainer may decide that your version would take more
> maintenance effort than it's worth, considering the rarity of systems
> that don't provide POSIX facilities.

They're not rare.  Posix is not what is common between
computers.  It is only what is common between Unix
systems.  It is C90 that is common between computers.
That is why it was created.  And they did a very good
job of it.  And people writing C programs should follow
the C90 standard unless they're doing something that
doesn't conceptually fit into the C90 standard, e.g.
traversing directories.  Text processing programs don't
usually fit this description.  Even GCC itself should have
come in a C90 flavour, when used with the "-S" option,
because in that usage, all it does is read text files and
output other text files.  There's no reason to make these
things non-portable, and I have changed GCC to make
it C90-compliant, as a precursor to doing the MVS port.

BFN.  Paul.

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