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Mail Archives: djgpp/1995/05/29/23:56:03

Date: Mon, 29 May 1995 15:06:37 -0500 (CDT)
From: Aaron Ucko <UCKO AT VAX1 DOT ROCKHURST DOT EDU>
Subject: Re: MAKE (1st time using...)
To: mcastle AT umr DOT edu
Cc: djgpp AT sun DOT soe DOT clarkson DOT edu
Organization: Rockhurst College; Kansas City, MO

>> Why was the decision not to allow just any whitespace made again?  It
>> seems rather arbitrary, particularly as most other programs don't care.
>
>It was an arbitrary decision.  One that Stu Feldman (I *think*
>that's his name), almost immediately felt was a bad decision when
>he released the first make program many years ago.  But, he also
>felt, that changing the definition of a makefile, after it had
>already been "widely distributed" would have been an even greater
>mistake.  So here we are.

Why does that situation seem vaguely familiar? :-)

>You could probably get more information on this than you ever
>cared to really know by asking about it on alt.folklore.computer,
>comp.programming, or comp.lang.c.

Not a bad idea.

>Btw, there is a very simple one line patch to GNUMake to allow
>any whitespace there.  I believe it's been posted to this list
>before.

Perhaps I'll check the archives.
  
>But it's just never seemed to have been pushed hard
>enough by GNUMake users, to get rolled into the official
>distribution.  While I imagine that the make maintainer would
>probably be resitant to such including such a patch (after all,
>it's really only the PC world that has makes that take any white
>space there, at least I don't know of any unix makes that will),
>I imagine that if enough people asked for it, he might be
>persuaded.  After all, GNUMake already has extensions that aren't
>in the POSIX standard.

Perhaps it could be a flag (-a, --allow-arbitrary-whitespace) so that
purists would be satisfied.

--- Aaron Ucko (ucko AT vax1 DOT rockhurst DOT edu; finger for PGP public key) | httyp!
Geek code 2.1 [for explanation, finger hayden@ | `God's Laws' (Rudy Rucker,  
vax1.mankato.msus.edu]: GCS/M/S d(-) H s g+ p? \ _Master of Space and Time_):
!au a17 w+ v+(++) C++(+++)>++++ UL++(S+)>++++	\ 1) Be clean. 2) Follow Gary.
P+(++) L++ 3(-) E- N+(++) K- W--(---) M-@ V-(--) \ 3) Teach God's Laws.
po-(--) Y+ t(+) !5 j(++) R(-) G' tv--(-) b+++	  +---------------------------
!D(--) B--(---) e>++++(*) u++(@) h!() f(+) r-(--)>+++ n+(-) y?

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