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Re: Suggestion for mkdir

From: Renich Bon Ciric
Subject: Re: Suggestion for mkdir
Date: Wed, 20 Nov 2013 22:02:11 -0600

On Wed, Nov 20, 2013 at 5:28 PM, Bob Proulx <address@hidden> wrote:
> I thought I would say a few words in defense of POSIX.  Why is it this
> way?  Because the that was the way the command was originally written
> to work.  There are a zillion small behaviors like this from when
> people wrote a tool (mkdir, mv, cp, etc.) each of the different times
> any of the tools were written.  Every time someone wrote a new version
> of one of the Unix utilities (because the original was closed and
> proprietary) then it would have its own different quirks.  This led to
> every Unix-like system being different from each other in the zillion
> different ways.  The classic case being SysV versus BSD but now that
> would include GNU too.  It was very hard to write a script that would
> run the same on different systems.
> The purpose of POSIX was to say enough was enough.  Stop the
> proliferation of differences.  Document the existing behavior and
> standardize upon it so that scripts could be written portably.  As
> long as they only used the standard behavior then they could count on
> being able to operate the same on every standard platform.
> And so we have things like mkdir.  It conforms to the standard because
> that is a good thing.  The standard says what it says because
> originally it documented the existing behavior of the then current
> systems.  And this is good because the alternative of having divergent
> behavior everywhere is worse.

Thank you for your words. I get it. It's kind of harder to suggest
modifications to a standard though. What is the correct path on
suggesting something that is clearly better; at least from my POV?

It's hard to be free... but I love to struggle. Love isn't asked for;
it's just given. Respect isn't asked for; it's earned!
Renich Bon Ciric

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