Re: Inconsistencies in handling command flags: `--flag=value` different than `--flag value`

Subject:Re: Inconsistencies in handling command flags: `--flag=value` different than `--flag value`

Date:Mon, 27 Apr 2020 14:02:22 -0400

To:David Bremner ,Ciprian Dorin Craciun ,notmuch@notmuchmail.org

Cc:

From:Daniel Kahn Gillmor


On Mon 2020-04-27 14:53:07 -0300, David Bremner wrote:
> Quoting notmuch(1)
>
>    OPTION SYNTAX
>        All options accepting an argument can be used with '='
>        or ':' as a separator. For the cases where it's not ambiguous
>        (in particular excluding boolean options), a space can also be
>        used.

This is a pretty twisty way to say what we mean.  Are there other cases
besides boolean options?  If there are, perhaps it'd be clearer to say
something like this for the last sentence:

    Except for boolean options and other potential ambiguous cases, a
    space can also be used as a separator.

If there aren't, we could say:

    Except for boolean options (which would be ambiguous), a space can
    also be used as a separator.

Alternately, we could deprecate using whitespace for all options,
produce explicit warnings to stderr when whitespace appears on the next
release, remove the suggestion to use a whitespace separator from the
documentation, and eventually phase it out entirely in some future
release.


        --dkg
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