Re: That thar de facto lex and yacc standard

From: Mark Coletti (
Date: 11/20/95

Edward Almasy pounded furiously on the keyboard:

> Mark Coletti writes:
> > 	Just in case there are those who have a ironic sense of humor
> > failure and don't take this with the appropriately large grain of
> > salt: lex and yacc come lock, stock, and barrel with all unix systems.
> > <smirk>

> Unfortunately there is no ANSI standard for lex and yacc, which

	Even though there is no ISO or ANSI lex and yacc standard,
there is a de facto standard.  These utilities have been around long
enough that their syntax and semantics have basically ossified long
ago.  A similar statement could be made of K&R C, which isn't an
official standard, but one generally recognized in the C progamming
	(OTOH, there are POSIX standards for lex and yacc which are
described in some detail in the O'Reilly _Lex & Yacc_ text.)

> that either someone (Jeremy) would have to deal with the headache of
> trying to maintain compatability between various lex and yacc
> flavors,

	Given that CircleMUD is a unix app, that automatically
eliminates the MS-DOG varieties of lex and yacc.  This leaves the
AT&T, Berkeley, POSIX, and GNU "variants"; and, these only signicantly
differ by esoteric command line parameters and possible error
diagnostics.  The exceptions are that some versions have known,
documented bugs; and, the GNU versions have unique extensions (which
could be ignored for portability).

	Personally, I'd be more concerned with generic compatabilities
between different flavors of _unix_ and not for lex and yacc.  It's
safe to say that there are many more significant differences between
BSDish and SYSVish unixes than there are differences between the
limited varieties of lex and yacc.


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Happy coding!

Mark Coletti                       |  DBA Systems, Inc.  Fairfax, VA                 |  United States Geological Survey  |  Office of Standards & Technology
	      Drag me, drop me, treat me like an object!

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