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Re: [Bug-gnulib] SPACE-before-TAB nits in getloadavg.m4 and lib-ld.m4

From: Paul Eggert
Subject: Re: [Bug-gnulib] SPACE-before-TAB nits in getloadavg.m4 and lib-ld.m4
Date: 18 Aug 2003 12:59:15 -0700
User-agent: Gnus/5.09 (Gnus v5.9.0) Emacs/21.3

Bruno Haible <address@hidden> writes:

> sc_space_tab:
>         @grep -E '[ ]   ' --exclude=$(srcdir)/lib/regex.c               \
>                 --exclude=$(srcdir)/m4/lib-*.m4                         \
>                 $(srcdir)/{lib,src}/*.[chly]                            \
>                 $(find -name Makefile.am) &&                            \
>           { echo '$(ME): found SPACE-TAB sequence; remove the SPACE'    \

Surely this is too strong.  The exclude pattern shouldn't exclude all
the C files in lib and src, only the files that you maintain.

Ideally the code wouldn't rely on the distinction between space and
internal tabs; e.g., you could filter the code through "expand |
unexpand" without affecting its correctness.  This would help to avoid
inadvertant glitches when others cut and paste our code.

Perhaps we should add a new quadrigraph, "@HT@" say, that Autoconf
expands to a tab.  That way, we could write things like this:

IFS="${IFS= @address@hidden"
s/address@hidden@ address@hidden@ ]*/ /g

without worrying whether someone else expands the tabs.  This wouldn't
solve all the problems with tabs, but it would address the two
potential glitches that Jim noticed.

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