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From Scott Ellsworth <sc...@alodar.com>
Subject Re: Cross-platform build.xml files
Date Wed, 22 May 2002 18:19:36 GMT

On Wednesday, May 22, 2002, at 10:44  AM, Diane Holt wrote:

> --- Gordon Tyler <gordon.tyler@sitraka.com> wrote:
>> But why would you want to? I'm not saying use only uppercase or use 
>> only lowercase letters, but if you want to distinguish files, why 
>> distinguish them *only* by case? It doesn't impart any useful 
>> information.
>
> This is getting a bit off-topic, but...

True, but I cannot resist a fun debate not really subject to facts.

> I'm just saying I shouldn't be prevented from using that as the
> distinction when I want to. If I want to have a Makefile and a makefile 
> in the same directory (and I have), there's no reason why I shouldn't 
> be able to do that.

Yes and no - English has fairly strict capitalization rules, such that 
there are very few times where the choice is optional.  Programming 
languages and operating systems are just as precise in many cases, but 
without the obvious rules making it clear to everyone how things should 
be expressed.

I am not at all convinced that having the ability to have makefile and 
Makefile as distinct files in a directory buys us more in expressiveness 
than it costs in simple errors and mistaken gestures.  Obviously, it is 
more expressive, but I do see a lot of "more thingie" "file not found" 
"more Thingie" errors, so it does cost.

Clearly a difference of opinion not subject to rational debate without 
some serious user testing, and I doubt we will find a lot of people 
working on that issue.

The feature I want more than that, though, is real version numbers and 
versioning built in to the OS at the filesystem level.  VMS had such, 
but no Unix variant I have worked with has managed it, primarily because 
the tools go a bit ape under those circumstances.

Scott


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