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From "Jose Alberto Fernandez" <>
Subject RE: Request: Change <javac> debug default to "on"
Date Thu, 07 Nov 2002 14:04:53 GMT

> From: Gus Heck []
> Did he say magic property? uh oh...
> (Mail shield up)
> Magic properties have been fairly unpopular. They generally obfuscate 
> behavior, and clutter up the namespace available for 
> properties. In this 
> case it would put critical information (critical for some at least) 
> about what javac is really doing in an obscure location away from the 
> invocation of the javac task.

Do you think that build files would be easier to write or more flexible if
we had to specify which compiler to use on each individual <javac> task?
I would think that it is very rare the case in which you want some files compiled by
one compiler and other files with a different compiler. Moreover, different
people on the same project may want to use different compilers.

"Magic properties" in reality are no other thing than global-predefined user preferences;
and it makes a lot of sense for this kind of usage.

> Besides this I am not sure why setting a property would be 
> better than 
> setting the flag in javac. The point under discussion is should the 
> _default_behavior_ change. There isn't really any need for a 
> new way to 
> customize the behavior of javac globally is there?

Well a very important point of the discussion is the alleged cost of changing
all those build files if we change this default behavior. The only thing I am proposing
is a way to define this default behaviour as a preference of the user (or developement environment).
Just the same as the compiler preference does.

Jose Alberto


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