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Re: bash manual on interactive shell

From: Mallika
Subject: Re: bash manual on interactive shell
Date: Sun, 12 Dec 2021 23:51:22 -0800


Thanks for the quick response! And for clearing up what 'option arguments'

I'm not sure I understood the last bit, though
>Something like "with only option arguments" could easily be misunderstood
as "with one or more option arguments".

Are you saying that the 'only' could be easily ignored? i.e. "with one or
more option arguments" is incorrect because it fails to specify that *no*
non-option arguments may be used?
Oh! You're saying the language used includes the case of no arguments at
all, whereas the language I'm proposing may be interpreted as requiring
option-arguments (which is what I had strugglingly understood it to mean)
in that case, may I simply suggest:
"started without any arguments, or with option arguments only"

It is certainly more words, but unless you already have a solid
understanding of non-option arguments (commands?) - in which case you're
only having to perform one negation in your head - I think this
construction makes it significantly easier to follow along.

Ultimately, of course, it's up to you. I've made as much of a case for
re-wording as I could :)

Thank you again for your help,

On Sun, Dec 12, 2021 at 10:08 PM Lawrence Velázquez <vq@larryv.me> wrote:

> On Sun, Dec 12, 2021, at 9:03 PM, Mallika wrote:
> > I'm a little confused about how all the and's and or's combine (I suppose
> > it's obvious if you're a little more familiar with the material - but it
> > would be great if it were possible to express this by indentation),
> It's a relatively confusing state of affairs.  An unordered list
> might help.
> > but I'd actually decided to write in just to clarify that first line:
> > "started without non-option arguments,"
> >
> > Does "option arguments" mean "option*al* arguments"?
> No.  While all option arguments happen to be optional, not all
> optional arguments are options.
> An "option argument", roughly speaking, is an argument that begins
> with one or two hyphen-minuses and affects the configuration of the
> invoked shell.  They are described here:
> https://www.gnu.org/software/bash/manual/html_node/Invoking-Bash.html
> > If the double-negative* is *actually correct, wouldn't the same sentiment
> > be expressed by "started with only option(al?) arguments"?
> Double-negatives
> > are inherently confusing, so it would be helpful to avoid them.
> Something like "with only option arguments" could easily be
> misunderstood as "with one or more option arguments".
> --
> vq

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