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Re: Last patch reviewed.

From: Paul Smith
Subject: Re: Last patch reviewed.
Date: Sat, 15 Sep 2007 18:14:02 -0400

On Thu, 2007-09-13 at 15:12 +0000, Boris Kolpackov wrote:
> Why not change the "get" syntax to be $(somefile: VARIABLE) instead
> of $(somefile::VARIABLE)? This way:
> 1. The "set" syntax is already there.

Not sure what you mean by this?

> 2. From the backwards-compatibility standpoint, 'somefile: VARIABLE'
>    is a very unlikely existing valiable name, more so than
>    'somefile::VARIABLE'.

Actually, somefile::VARIABLE is not an extremely unlikely variable name.
Because ":" is a special character to make it's very difficult to create
a variable name with this syntax.  The only way to do it is set a
variable to ":" then use that to construct the variable name.  Also, are
you suggesting the whitespace be mandatory?  I don't know that I like
that since it sort of violates expectations; in other places in make
whitespace is optional except where it is required as a word separator.
For instance a target relationship "foo:bar" is perfectly legal, as is
"foo : bar" or "foo: bar" or even "foo :bar".  If the whitespace is NOT
mandatory then having two colons is probably less likely than one.

Also, remember that substitution references have a similar syntax:
$(var:a=b).  This wouldn't conflict with your suggested syntax because
subst. references require the "=".  However, it's still close enough to
perhaps be confusing.

Finally, I chose "::" because various OO languages (C++, Perl, etc.) use
this as a naming scope modifier already.

 Paul D. Smith <address@hidden>          Find some GNU make tips at:            
 "Please remain calm...I may be mad, but I am a professional." --Mad Scientist

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