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From "Stirling, Scott" <>
Subject RE: macrodef and properties
Date Fri, 14 Nov 2003 18:58:20 GMT
> From: Jacob Kjome []
> At 09:02 AM 11/14/2003 +0000, you wrote:
> >On Friday 14 November 2003 05:28, Jacob Kjome wrote:
> >
> > There is currently some debate in the dev list about whether 
> > <local/> should be part of ant 1.6, and whether the macrodef's
> > attributes should be local properties.
> >
> >Peter
> I guess I'll have to read the discussion but, on the face of 
> it, this seems like a no-brainer.  Without the possibility of
> local variables, <macrodef>'s usefulness is much degraded.

I tend to agree.  A recurring problem for us is getting Ant to do loopish things, which invariably
requires careful design of build target dependencies with the use of if/unless/depends and
the ant-contrib <foreach>, and hope we don't use <foreach> so many times that
we start getting OutOfMemoryErrors.  The problem is, most people don't think build scripts
should require such careful design, and they code Ant scripts into a big sloppy mess that
won't scale or is slow as hell (let alone be maintainable).

It seems like <macrodef> has potential to do loops without depending on a new <ant>
under the covers for each loop iteration.  This would make Ant more scalable and faster for
large, complex builds.  If the <local/> type would help do that, then I think it is
a no-brainer.

Scott Stirling
Workscape, Inc.

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