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What is that -*- line for, anyway?
- To: DCP@SCRC-QUABBIN.ARPA
- Subject: What is that -*- line for, anyway?
- From: "George J. Carrette" <GJC@MC.LCS.MIT.EDU>
- Date: Tue, 4 Mar 86 23:18:16 EST
- Cc: common-lisp@SU-AI.ARPA, lab@ROCHESTER.ARPA, fahlman@C.CS.CMU.EDU
- In-reply-to: Msg of Tue 4 Mar 86 21:26 EST from David C. Plummer <DCP at SCRC-QUABBIN.ARPA>
To add to what you have said historically speaking, orginally
it was easier for an editor to understand "-*-" rather than some
form such as (MODULE "name" :package "foo" :syntax "bar)
presumably because the "-*-" first showed up in the TECO implemented EMACS
editor on the PDP-10. Predating lispmachines of course (not by much,
so an ITS historian should check me on this).
Q: Who invented the file mode line in EMACS?
Q: Who decided to extend this to the file attribute line syntax on the Lispm?
Later the "-*-" syntax was extended to require/allow such things as
package:(FOOBAR :USE (GLOBAL BAZ)
:SHADOW (CAR CDR CONS));
From this it is obvious that our Mr. Lab Managers comment about "-*-"
being easier to parse "for your editor so that it need not actually
'read' lisp" is both ignorant and condescending. The stuff after the
":" must be parsed with READ.