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Re: (pkglint) OVERRIDE_GEMSPEC is modified using "+=", its name should indicate plural.

On Sun, May 12, 2013 at 06:52:04PM +0000, David Holland wrote:
> On Sat, May 11, 2013 at 10:24:26PM +0200, Alistair Crooks wrote:
>  > 2. "SPEC" is an abbreviation. Is correct English usage to use an
>  > 'S' in abbreviations where plural. cf English "maths" vs US English
>  > "math" usage
> "specs" for "specifications" is widely seen. "maths" is a bad example
> because "mathematics" is not really a plural. (what's a "mathematic"?)

There are many other instances where a plural is implied, ignored, or
explicitly used, so a blanket "one rule fits all" is hard to find. Consider
other abbreviations such as "mach" for machine, "arch" for architectures,
and "OS" (admittedly more of an acronym, but often used in plural form).
Have you ever seen "machs", "archs", or "oss" written?
> however, looking at the usage of the variable, to match the pattern
> that pkglint has in mind (and other usages in pkgsrc) (and to be fair
> there is some value to this kind of consistency) it should be called
>  > 4.  What if the plural of a definition does not have a traditional -s
>  > suffix? Can we link pkglint to spell/ispell/aspell without incurring
>  > the licensing gods wrath?
> Given
>    PKG_SHEEP+=     goats
> pkglint says
>    WARN: Makefile:20: As PKG_SHEEP is modified using "+=", its name should 
> indicate plural.
> so I guess we'd better! :-)
> There's a list of variables and properties embedded in pkglint, and I
> expect if we needed to it would be possible to explicitly tag
> PKG_SHEEP as plural to shut this warning up.

My point (and I infer yours, as well) is that, English language being
the irregular beast that it is, strict adherence to questionable
warnings on English usage, and especially in a technical environment,
and including abbreviations, acronyms and contractions is not going to
be a good justification for anything.


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