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Re: [PATCH] regex: Add extra escapes to regular expressions in m4

From: Bruno Haible
Subject: Re: [PATCH] regex: Add extra escapes to regular expressions in m4
Date: Wed, 30 Jan 2019 04:17:39 +0100
User-agent: KMail/5.1.3 (Linux/4.4.0-141-generic; KDE/5.18.0; x86_64; ; )

Hi Eric,

> Here's what I'll push tomorrow to
> gnulib, if there are no further objections (a doc patch to autoconf is
> also needed, but that will be a different reply):

A doc patch would push authors of autoconf macros into this
double-the-backslashes business, which - as far as I understand -
is undesirable and should be obsoleted by the next Autoconf version.

For this reason, I would find it better to find workarounds that
are more directed to the solution that we'll want to have in the
next Autoconf version. To that effect:

  1. Think about what the solution in the next Autoconf version
     should look like. (A modification to AC_LANG_PROGRAM? Or
     a new macro, in order to keep backward compatibility for
     existing macros?)

  2. Put into gnulib's gnulib-common.m4 workarounds that make it
     possible to write autoconf macros for Autoconf 2.70, as if
     Autoconf 2.70 was already released.

  3. Then only document things. If we decide to make incompatible
     changes to AC_LANG_PROGRAM and friends, do NOT document the
     current (broken) behaviour. By documenting a broken behaviour,
     you would make things worse.


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