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Re: [patch] Add new Text decoration .Brx

From: Ingo Schwarze
Subject: Re: [patch] Add new Text decoration .Brx
Date: Fri, 10 Aug 2012 12:30:50 +0200
User-agent: Mutt/1.5.21 (2010-09-15)

Hi David,

David Hill wrote on Thu, Aug 09, 2012 at 02:26:39PM -0400:

> Attached is a diff to add a new Text decoration, .Brx, for Bitrig,
> an OpenBSD fork.

I object.

These macros (.Ux, .At, .Bx, .Bsx, .Nx, .Fx, .Ox, .Dx) are nothing but
legacy cruft, serve no real purpose, and just clutter the global
namespace.  There *may* have been a certain point in .Ux back in the
80th to give the UNIX trademark a certain font and size - but using
just .Tm UNIX would have served the same purpose with less clutter.
For things like NetBSD and OpenBSD it's completely pointless, there is
no need to format these names in any special way.  And even if there
were, these macros would seem exceedingly ill-designed.  If at all,
people should have designed one formatting macro taking the system
name as an argument, not one gratuitious macro per system.

I do not propose to deprecate these macros; they exist for a long time
and deprecating stuff is usually a bother.  But i'd definitely rather
deprecate them than add yet another one.  Hell, i'd rather spend the
time to scour our whole tree myself and remove this cruft everywhere
than having yet another one added, even though that would mean several
days of work, i guess.

On top of that, the proposal is premature.  Bitrig didn't even see
any release yet.  The website says:

  We are in the process of getting our first public release ready.
  Please be patient and check back often to see where we are at.
  The plan is to have something available for public consumption
  by the end of June 2012.

Well, apparently, it didn't happen.  The project doesn't appear to
be quite on track even by its own standards.  So even if anybody
feels we should try to fill the namespace with such macros,
i'd say for now, let's get some popcorn, sit back and watch.


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