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[Bug-gnu-arch] Re: [bug #5900] Use -3 as the short option for --three-wa

From: Miles Bader
Subject: [Bug-gnu-arch] Re: [bug #5900] Use -3 as the short option for --three-way, instead of -t
Date: Sun, 12 Oct 2003 22:00:15 -0400
User-agent: Mutt/1.3.28i

On Sun, Oct 12, 2003 at 06:56:40PM -0700, Tom Lord wrote:
> * -[digit]+
>   is an argument syntax for passing an arbitrary integer, and that's
>   potentially useful -- but not if you take over some -[digit] for an
>   option.

I thought about this briefly before I submitted the original change (and
actually tested it to see if your option parsing library treated digits
specially :-), but my impression is that in general things are moving
the other way -- viewing digits as just another letter for
option-parsing purposes, and discouraging any more `special' treatment.

Stuff like `head -N' used to be not uncommon, but in modern programs
such syntax seems very rare.  I think it's simply too much work to make
digits a special case in a coherent way, especially in light of all the
various option-parsing libraries &c around.  [It's arguably a shame to
disallow using negative integers without special syntax (to prevent them
from being mistaken for options), but that's a sufficiently uncommon
case that it's probably not worth adding special support for.]

IMESHO, &c, &c.

Occam's razor split hairs so well, I bought the whole argument!

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