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Re: Feature Request: Custom delimeter for single quotes


From: Ilkka Virta
Subject: Re: Feature Request: Custom delimeter for single quotes
Date: Fri, 1 Nov 2019 10:37:50 +0200
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Macintosh; Intel Mac OS X 10.11; rv:60.0) Gecko/20100101 Thunderbird/60.9.0

On 1.11. 06:54, Patrick Blesi wrote:
I'm looking for a hybrid between single quotes and a here doc or here
string.

The main use case is for accepting arbitrary user-specified text.

Do your users enter the text by directly editing the script?
Would it make more sense to use e.g. 'read' to read the input directly from the user?

input=""
nl='
'
echo "Enter text, end with ^D:"
while IFS= read -r line; do
    input="$input$line$nl"
done

printf "You entered:\n---\n%s---\n" "$input"


or to just have the text in a separate file (not the script) and read it from there?

input=$(< inputfile)


That way, the text appears in a variable, and you don't need to care about quotes inside it.


(You could also read from stdin with just input=$(cat) instead of the while read loop but that feels a bit odd to me for some reason.)

I would
like to wrap this text in single quotes so as to prevent any variable
expansion or interpretation of the text of any kind. Additionally, I would
like to allow the users to include single quotes in their text without
requiring that they escape these quotes.

Something akin to the following would alleviate the need to communicate
that users must escape single quotes, but also provide the same literal
string behavior of single quotes.

presuming the arbitrarily substituted text is:

echo 'this command is specified by the user'

Then a syntax for this single quote heredoc behavior could be like:

$ sh -c <<^MAGIC_WORD echo 'this command is specified by the user'
MAGIC_WORD

Everything within the MAGIC_WORD declarations would not have command
substitution, variable expansion, etc, but would be treated as if it were
wrapped in single quotes with the exception that single quotes between the
MAGIC_WORDs need not be escaped.

Pardon my naïveté, does any such feature exist or are there good ways to
accomplish this? If not, is this something that could feasibly be
implemented? Would it be desirable?

Thanks,

Patrick



--
Ilkka Virta / address@hidden



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