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Re: parsing

daemon@ATHENA.MIT.EDU (Tue Nov 16 19:52:01 1993 )

From: joe@unipress.com
To: stewarta@netcom.com (Alex Stewart)
Cc: coldstuff@MIT.EDU
In-Reply-To: Your message of "Tue, 16 Nov 93 14:49:28 PST."
Date: Tue, 16 Nov 93 19:35:47 -0500

> On the subject of regexps:  I also tend to lean towards not including regexp
> matching simply because it's been my experience that people who understand
> them tend to lean far too heavily on them, and they're often not the best 
> tool for the job (except for quite complicated tasks, which can often be
> broken up into a set of simpler tasks, leading to increased readability and 
> more easily modifyable systems).

The same argument could be made against the exception handling system in C--,
or fork() in MOO.  Features of great utility shouldn't be left out for the
reason that they might be abused.

> MUDs, after all, are not text editors or
> command-line search programs, and do have their own programming languages
> which work quite nicely at many of the more sophisticated tasks regexps were
> designed for.

It's worse; text editors and command line search programs ARE BUILT WITHIN

My point:  if you don't like regexps, avoid them.  They are important tools to
me, and it would appear to some other programmers too, so I feel I should
lobby for their inclusion.  I feel that I am beginning to over-lobby a bit
here -- I've spoken my thoughts, so now I'll shut up.