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From Jason_Henrik...@providian.com
Subject RE: if and unless attributes for all Tasks
Date Wed, 16 May 2001 21:36:02 GMT

Hi All,

Roger Vaughn and I have been discussing XML as a flow control language and
I've come up with a compromise that I'm considering taking a stab at
writing.  I want to bounce the idea off all of you before I invest a pile
of time into an idea that one of you might be able to easily debunk.

I feel that XML is a very poor language for describing conditionals.  All
the arguments seem to show that.  I suggest a new task called 'code' that
would work something like this:

 <target name="make">
   <code>
         if(true){
           callTarget("compile");
         }
   </code>
 </target>

My task would then take all of the Java between the code tags, put it into
a TempTaskN.java file, compile it, load the class then call the task just
like any other.  Basically, the code tag is just a scriptlet in the
build.xml.

To my thinking this has the following advantages:
     - It doesn't break the current design and architecture
     - It takes advantage of the fact that we already have a very nice
language and compiler,
          we should not have to build another one
     - Because tasks in this context tend to be one-off, non-reusable bits
of code, it is
          really nice to keep the task code in the same file as the rest of
the build.
     - The java in the code block could call the other tasks, but still
have all of the
          flexibility of Java

My most optimistic hope is that I can write this into a regular task, and
ANT itself would not have to change at all.

Can any of you think of a reason this wouldn't work?  If not, I'm going to
try coding it next week and I've got some scraps of free time coming.

Let me know what you think, and thank's to Roger for the discussion about
it.

                                                        Jason Henriksen







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