Boost logo

Boost :

From: David Abrahams (david.abrahams_at_[hidden])
Date: 2002-01-17 12:04:08

Ed, all your points are well-taken. An important reason for spaces-only is
simply that when multiple people touch a file, it's very likely that someone
will replace a tab with spaces and mess up the alignment. We can't legislate
all-tabs, because that would require that all files are alignment-agnostic.
So, the most reliable viable approach is to require all-spaces.


----- Original Message -----
From: "Brey, Edward D" <EdwardDBrey_at_[hidden]>
To: <boost_at_[hidden]>
Sent: Thursday, January 17, 2002 11:11 AM
Subject: RE: [boost] Files with tabs or missing last line newline

> I'm hesitant to post on a topic that can get so personal and religious,
> I feel that fairness dictates a brief note that tabs are not inherently
> evil. The root problem comes from assuming a given tab size and the
> misalignment that ensues if the assumption is wrong. However, it is
> possible to write code that is entirely tab-size agnostic. Such code does
> not rely on any alignment for any character except the first
> (which is often fine in light of modern-day syntax highlighting). Even a
> rule of "tabs only or spaces only, but not both" is too restrictive,
> because, for example, it rules out the "space before 'public:', tab before
> declaration" approach to creating a class, even though that approach is
> still tab-size agnostic.
> Given alignment-free code, tabs actually are beneficial: they allow users
> customize indent to their choosing, and they eliminate from users of
> proportional fonts the negative effect that opening spaces tend to be too
> skinny.
> These comments do not lessen the importance of Beman's request, since the
> files I've seen in Boost do tend to make alignment assumptions. I'm
> speaking simply on principle.
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Beman Dawes [mailto:bdawes_at_[hidden]]
> Sent: Thursday, 17 January 2002 9:32 AM
> To: boost_at_[hidden]
> Subject: [boost] Files with tabs or missing last line newline
> First, thanks to John Maddock, Rich Lee, and Jeremy Siek for already
> a huge number of tab problems.
> We've still got a way to go, however. See below. The "tabs" indication
> means the file has one or more tabs. A no-no because editors with tabs
> differently mess up file display. The "last line" indication means the
> file does not end with a newline. Bothersome because some compilers warn
> on this condition.
> Please take a few minutes to fix any files you are responsible for. Also,
> please set your editor to "use tabs instead of spaces". That's good
> for anyone writing code which will be read by someone other than the
> author.
> [snip]
> Info: Send unsubscribe requests to:
> Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to

Boost list run by bdawes at, gregod at, cpdaniel at, john at