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Loading functions

From: John W. Eaton
Subject: Loading functions
Date: Sun, 10 May 1998 22:39:45 -0500 (CDT)

On 10-May-1998, Jonas Bofjall <address@hidden> wrote:

| I feel a bit stupid here. Can you further explain this behaviour? Why
| doesn't Octave notice that the file has changed until the next usage?

It's a bug that I introduced in 2.0.12.  In 2.0.11 and earlier
versions, time stamps on M-files may, depending on the value of
ignore_function_time_stamp, be checked every time the function is
called.  In 2.0.12, I tried to change that so that time stamps would
be checked at most once in between prompting for input.
Unfortunately, I chose to implement this feature with time(), and the
resolution of is only 1 second, which is not good enough.  I'll be
fixing this for 2.0.13.

| I reread the info pages since I got several hints to do so. Why does
| Octave separate `script' m-files and `function' m-files? Is this only
| to decide whether or not to execute the file as well?

A function file is one that, ignoring comments and other whitespace,
begins with the keyword `function'.  Such a file is expected to define
exactly one function and when it is autoloaded, it is also called.

Script files are any other M-files, and may define more than one

| The info pages state that Octave decides if a file is to be reread
| by checking its creation date. Now please don't flame me for not
| seeking my answer in the source, but does it check if the file date
| has *changed* or if its *newer*?

Octave checks to see if the time stamp on the file is newer than the
last time it was read.

| (There's a difference when working
| on several machines with unsynchronized clocks, which could explain
| its behaviour completely.)

Having unsynchronized clocks can cause lots of other trouble.  I'd
recommend using xntpd to make sure that the clocks on your systems
remain synchronized.


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