wildmats (was: Re: ietf-nntp Draft summary of IETF 48 meeting)
Clive D.W. Feather
clive at demon.net
Thu Aug 10 00:54:23 PDT 2000
Russ Allbery said:
>> I think you are overstating here. It can't break all attempts if the
>> parser is smart enough. It may break such attempts in current
>> implementations. Perhaps that is really all you are trying to say here.
> INN's parser for XPAT already does try to handle embedded spaces, although
> it doesn't do it all that well.
His point was that embedded spaces mean the parser needs to be context
sensitive. This is bad design - special cases always lead to confusion, and
should be avoided where possible.
It is also in direct contradiction with 977 and the current draft, which
says "(Therefore, string parameters MUST NOT contain US-ASCII spaces.)".
>> So, is there agreement that wildmats can't have embedded spaces in them?
> I don't agree there; I think that at least some of the matching commands
> like PAT really do need them.
I'm agnostic on this. But if they're necessary, I feel it's better to have
an escape mechanism (such as \s) rather than mess up the parsing. Such a
mechanism can buy us other things as well.
> I'm in favor of generalizing comma support; it's supported in enough
> different places and not in others that trying to maintain that situation
> doesn't strike me as a good idea.
I would be happy with that. Are we allowed to do it (I remain confused as
to what changes we are and aren't allowed to make) ?
Clive D.W. Feather | Work: <clive at demon.net> | Tel: +44 20 8371 1138
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