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Re: [0/18] new argv_ref branch for m4 speedup

From: Eric Blake
Subject: Re: [0/18] new argv_ref branch for m4 speedup
Date: Thu, 20 Dec 2007 22:42:35 -0700
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According to Gary V. Vaughan on 12/20/2007 10:22 PM:
>> The patch series currently adds a new
>> macro, m4parw (the name was suggested months ago when I first brought up
>> the issue of FIFO vs. LIFO), but since I also added the file wraplifo.m4
>> that can do the same trick without using the new builtin, I'm open to the
>> idea of not adding m4parw after all.
> Unless we absolutely must add new builtins to provide missing functionality
> or comply with POSIX, I'd rather keep the core language as lean and small
> as possible.  Of course, on HEAD, there's nothing to prevent you adding an
> m4parw loadable module that is only loaded on demand if the speedup is
> significant compared to the macro version.

OK, I haven't gotten that far in my merge from the argv_ref branch into
master and branch-1_4, so when I return from vacation, I'll remove all
vestiges of m4parw (the file examples/wraplifo.m4 can do the same with
little penalty in speed or memory) from the argv_ref branch.  It's been
fun rebasing the argv_ref branch so frequently, experimenting with patch
ideas, then percolating the improvements up earlier in the series.  But
now that there are binary files on the branch (as of stage 9), you have to
use 'git rebase -m' instead of plain 'git rebase' if you merge any changes
into those binary files.

> I'm still leaning towards the idea of distributing m4sugar with GNU M4,
> which would allow us to optimise the implementations, or even migrate parts
> of it to C, in order to provide a nice speedup for autoconf.

Seems reasonable to me, as well; we'll see how things progress once I get
M4 1.4.11 out the door next year.

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

Eric Blake             address@hidden
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