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From Ben Hyde <bh...@pobox.com>
Subject Re: FW: general/3563: I want to allow the definition and use of macros within runtime configuration files.
Date Mon, 21 Dec 1998 14:01:49 GMT

I agree with Dean.

Fabien COELHO writes:
>(1) I practiced m4 a lot. it's really special,

"M4 is special" - sure is!  Like all the core Unix tools it has
it's niche and one is well rewarded for getting to know it on
it's own terms.

We should avoid the temptation to let add this and that to the
configuration files until we can lay on general fix to the beasts.

Nobody would argue that the configuration are not very verbose,
somewhat delicate, and full of uninteresting chaff - that they
need some abstraction to fix that.

The argument is where to get that abstraction.  In the short
term the usual ways (m4/perl/awk/sed/cpp, etc. etc.) are mighty 
powerful.  In the long term the current consensus is to get
good abstraction from an XML notation, declaration, and GUI editing 
tools written by other parties.

The usual hill climbing - scratch the itch - make it better
step by step approach needs to bear that long term goal in
mind.  The XML community is doing lots of stuff, but is macros
one of them?

 - ben hyde

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