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Idea: Allow certain special targets as dependencies

From: David A. Wheeler
Subject: Idea: Allow certain special targets as dependencies
Date: Sun, 09 Jun 2019 18:46:24 -0400 (EDT)

Idea: Allow certain special targets as dependencies

It's often the case that a target also needs to be a special target. E.g.:
.PHONY: all
all: do-this do-that

Obviously this *works*, but it consumes many extra lines &
requires duplication of target names.  For example,
if you misspell the "duplicated" names bad things happen.
For short makefiles this isn't a big deal, but with lots of rules
it gets annoying.

As syntactic sugar,
I'd like to see selected special targets allowed as dependencies.
When this happens, it's the same thing as if the target was listed
as a dependency of the special target. E.g., you could express
the same thing above as:

all: .PHONY do-this do-that

This doesn't add new *functionality* to a makefile, but if you're
creating a GNU make specific makefile anyway the savings of
lines can be significant.  It also eliminates a source of errors.

I propose that this abbreviation with the following special targets:

--- David A. Wheeler

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