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Re: `make' written in elisp

From: David Kastrup
Subject: Re: `make' written in elisp
Date: Tue, 04 Jan 2005 00:10:55 +0100
User-agent: Gnus/5.11 (Gnus v5.11) Emacs/21.3.50 (gnu/linux)

Ralf Angeli <address@hidden> writes:

> * Richard Stallman (2005-01-03) writes:
>>     At least it should be able to call things like `configure'
>>     which is a mandatory step in the build process of packages like
>>     AUCTeX and preview-latex.  During this step the values of some
>>     important variables are determined and written to the package's
>>     site configuration file.
>> Why is it important for Emacs Lisp packages to do that sort of
>> thing?
> Automatically determining variables specific to the site the package
> is being installed at configuration time is a means to cut down load
> times.  There are things where it is not efficient or feasible to
> carry out the respective tests each time the package is loaded.
> As an example, in AUCTeX we are currently using `configure' to
> determine locations where TeX trees are located.  The resulting
> value is used at runtime for speeding up file searches.

I am not actually convinced that this is a good idea: I'd prefer it
that _if_ AUCTeX is made to match some package layout, then the whole
installation/configuration will be performed by Lisp.

Probably cached in customize variables, and with an option to redo the
detection on demand (in case you want to experiment with different
setups of TeX distributions or similar).

I'd really like it if we could skip all of the autoconf magic (which
is particularly painful and error-prone dealing with paths with spaces
and backslashes) for a reasonably easy Elisp solution.  It would
appear that with some of the mentioned functions in this thread, this
might be possible.

David Kastrup, Kriemhildstr. 15, 44793 Bochum

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