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Re: [PATCH] Improve compatibility between M4 and CPP.

From: Eric Blake
Subject: Re: [PATCH] Improve compatibility between M4 and CPP.
Date: Wed, 08 Jul 2009 07:56:16 -0600
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According to Eric Blake on 7/8/2009 7:41 AM:
> But even then, I would still like for
> 'm4 --sync' to be short for 'm4 --synclines' rather than an ambiguous
> option, so suggestions for a better name that avoids option-name ambiguity
> would be welcome (maybe '--alternate-synclines'?).

Another thing to consider is the master branch of m4.git, where we
currently have:

a new builtin, syncoutput, that exposes sync-line printing on the fly via
a boolean value (0 or off, 1 or on)

- --synclines = short for --syncoutput=1

- --syncoutput[=value] = call the new builtin syncoutput with value as its

To introduce a new style of sync line output, it may be better to
re-purpose the syncoutput builtin to take a tri-state value (off, normal,
and alternate), at which point, the --syncoutput command line option, with
its optional argument, could be used as --syncoutput=alternate to get your
desired semantics.

Basically, I think the idea of an alternate output style has merit, but we
must first decide on the right design approach before coding up something
that we will later regret or which would interfere with what is already on
the master branch (although since there has never been a non-beta release
from the master branch, we still have some freedom in re-purposing the
command line and/or the syncoutput builtin to match the best design).

- --
Don't work too hard, make some time for fun as well!

Eric Blake             address@hidden
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