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RE: another newbie question -- auto-mode-alist regexp

From: Bingham, Jay
Subject: RE: another newbie question -- auto-mode-alist regexp
Date: Mon, 23 Sep 2002 17:59:03 -0500

1. The \\ means make the next character literal.  Two are required because the 
string is parsed before it is placed in the variable if there are not two then 
the single \ gets stripped out and the literalness is lost.  So \. becomes just 
. (which means match any character) while \\. becomes \. (which means find a 

2. Yes, the $ means end of string.  Why it is not used on the xml is 
speculation unless you can get the author to respond.  My guess is the author 
wanted to match anything that had .xml in it.

3. Probably.

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 -----Original Message-----
From:   Robert P. J. Day [mailto:address@hidden 
Sent:   Monday, September 23, 2002 5:44 PM
To:     GNU emacs mailing list
Subject:        another newbie question -- auto-mode-alist regexp

  i've looked through both the emacs and elisp info pages, and
i haven't found a simple explanation for the syntax of the 
expression for setting the auto-mode-alist in my .emacs.

  a couple of examples that are part of the
(add-to-list 'auto-mode-alist ...  when i bring up online help
within emacs on the variable auto-mode-alist:

  ("\\.xml\\'" . xml-mode)
  ("\\.spec$" . rpm-spec-mode)
  ("\\.php[34]\\'\\|\\.php\\'\\|\\.phtml\\'" . php-mode)

what i haven't figured out yet:

1)  what means the sequence \\', as in what you see after
   ".xml" in that first example?  i can understand everything
   else, but that baffles me.

2) i assume that the "$" after .spec means end of string, which
  is familiar.  i'm curious why a lot of the other suffix regexp
  matches also don't match to end of string.  like the first one,
  .xml.  just curious.

3) regarding the php example, couldn't that have been written as
  ("\\.php[34]?\\'\\|\\.phtml\\'" . php-mode)

(this assumes that i still don't know what \\' means.)

  a pointer to the correct online help or info page would do
nicely.  thanks for your patience.


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