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Regular expression creation [was: Re: Emacs Lisp's future]

From: Alexis
Subject: Regular expression creation [was: Re: Emacs Lisp's future]
Date: Fri, 19 Sep 2014 07:54:19 +1000

Daniel Colascione writes:

> On 09/17/2014 07:07 PM, Alexis wrote:
>> i like this suggestion. i'm rather comfortable with Perl5 REs, and can
>> find myself frustrated trying to create REs in ELisp. Having said that,
>> the issue is not usually the syntax of ELisp REs per se (e.g. needing to
>> escape things like capturing parentheses or the alternatives pipe); it's
>> needing to escape various things /further/ because REs can only be
>> specified in the form of a standard ELisp string. On several occasions
>> i've ended up using a combination of pcre-to-elisp and re-builder to try
>> to work out if the problem is too few backslashes, too many backslashes,
>> or both.
> That's why we have rx.

i find rx .... unwieldy. For me, rx is to PCREs as a putative function
'apply-function-to-each-element-of-sequence' is to 'mapcar'. i don't
want an English-language wrapper for regular expressions; i want regular
expressions that don't suffer from backslashitis. And, given the several
discussions by a number of people over the last several months -
including recently - about alternatives to the current RE-creation
system in Emacs, it seems to me that rx is hardly the final piece of the
Emacs Lisp RE puzzle.


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