Reduce fails to generate "usage"

Developers
James
2009-10-10
2012-11-20
  • James

    James - 2009-10-10

    Hmm - trying

    reduce -help

    does not produce a usage listing with command-line switches.  It would be polite to fix that.  It _does_ produce a statement that includes

    run this application with the option
    -dump-source. Eg issue a command such as:
      reduce -dump-source reduce.tar.bz2

    but then, that produces the response

    Executable file is damaged

    So, some problem there as well.

    James

     
  • Arthur Norman

    Arthur Norman - 2009-10-10

    The -dump-source feature no longer exists - it was an attempt to cope with what I now believe to have been an unnecessarily pessimistic reading of obligations brought through use of an LGPL library. The message mentioning it was a hang over. Prompted my your fair comment I have put some stuff in the source that displays a list of the command-lien flags if you pass "-help". I hope to put that in the subversion later today. Current draft text is as follows, but layout here may be a mess. IN general the source in csl/cslbase/csl.c may have longer comments explaining each option!

    Options:
    -a   do not use. Flips meaning of the Lisp "batchp" function.

    -b   do not colour prompts. -bOIP sets colours for output,
                                input and prompt, using rgbcmyk
                                for Red, Green, Blue, Cyan etc.

    -c   display something that is not a Copyright statement (because of LGPL).

    -d VVV or  -d VVV=VVV define a Lisp symbol as the system start

    -e   enable some feature that is at present an experiment. Not for users!

    -f or -f nnn  listen on socket 1206 or nnn to run a remote session.
                  This option is not for normal users.

    -g   enable some options that help when debugging. You get backtraces.

    -h   on X windows this may use x-terminal fonts rather than ones
         used via Xft that live with the application. Not recommended.

    -i <image file> specific the location of the initial image file explicitly
                    You may have multiple image files, seached for modules in
                    the order listed.

    -j   used for depencency tracking. '-j fileuse.dat' notes what files
         are accessed during this run in the indicated place.

    -k nnnK or -knnnM or -knnnG suggest heap-size to use. Often not needed

    -l logfile   keep transcript of session for you.

    -m   a memory trace option not for ordinary use.

    -n   ignore the restart function in an image file so that the system.
         starts up in raw Lisp. Sometimes useful if image file is broken.

    -o <image file> specified where newly created compiled  modules and
         saved heap images should go. Default is in the standard image.

    -p   reserved for a potential profile option.-q   tend to be Quiet. see also -v.

    -r nnn or -r nnn,mmm sets initial random seed. Passing 0 means use
         current time of day and similar nonrepeatable stuff. May be
         used to force repeatability of code that uses randomness.

    -s   causes compiler to display "assembly code".

    -t modulename  prints the timestamp of the given module and exits.

    -u VVV undefines the Lisp symbol VVV at the start of the run.

    -v   runs in a slighly more verbose mode.

    -w   controls if code runs in a window or in console. Also -w+ and -w-
         can override cases where the system really wants to go one way.

    -x   avoid trapping exceptions so you can use a low-level debugger
         to sort out errors in the kernel.

    -y   At one stage this enabled Japanese character support. Not now     maintained.

    -z   when the code starts up it is just a basic raw Lisp core without    even a compiler. Used to bootstrap the system.

    • filename  redirect output to the given file so it does not appear
           on the screen.

    -texmacs run in texmacs mode. You must use the plugin from the
         cslbase/texmacs-plugin directory.

    -<other> reserved for additional extended options.

    -help this output!

    This will get into a ready-built binary when one next gets made, but where I am is now swimming in students and time is a bit tight for a while.

    Arthur

     
  • James

    James - 2009-10-10

    Some comments with respect to understanding;

    You might add a comment at the top, about exiting Reduce, 'Enter "bye;" on the command line to exit Reduce.", or some such, though I do notice that "^C" does produce a useful message. 

    -bOIP

    The format of "OIP" is not obvious.  What is the format of "rgbcmyk"?  How is that different from "rgb"?  Are there no delimiters in "OIP"?  Maybe you could show a single example in-line, "The default is -b black red blue" - except, I don't know what the actual format should be.  Nothing I tried changed the colors, though "-b green" produces the error message '+++ Could not read file "green"'.  Using "-b0000ff00ff00ffff00" is silently ignored and does nothing at all. 

    -w controls if code runs in a window or in console.

    Please clarify - in what way does "-w" control "if"?  Are the "+" and "-" characters required for "-w" to have an effect?  Does "-w", by itself, default to having some effect?  Does it force window behaviour in a text console?  Or inhibit window behaviour in a text console?  Or…?

    So, it looks like "-w" means "force text-console mode from a  graphics window."  You might add "Reduce produces typeset graphics output by default, unless started in a text console.", which, if you are using a text console, you might not have known. 

    -texmacs run in texmacs mode.

    Maybe you could add a couple of words, expanding upon the meaning of "texmacs mode".  What does that mean, to "run in texmacs mode"?  My version of Reduce responds with 'Unknown extended option "-texmacs"'.  You say "use the plugin", but I wouldn't know how to start with a plugin, and none of the other command-line switches mention starting with a plugin. 

    Also, additionally, "-texmacs" produces the message

    NB: use "- filename" (with whitespace)
        for output redirection now.

    You might add the comment ", with whitespace," to the description for "-". 

    The following are some typo's that would not be marked by a spell checker:

    -i <image file> specific the location…

    I'm guessing you meant "specify the location", "y" instead of "c". 

    -o <image file> specified where…

    Again, "specifies where", "s" instead of "d". 

    > where I am is now swimming in students and time is a bit tight for a while. 

    Yes - students!  You can have them help with bugs and clean-up in Reduce!  What a wonderful way to learn about Lisp and have an impact in the world!  ;) 

    Thanks for the command-line switch descriptions.  I thought there might be a "-w" in there somewhere, for "cut and paste" in text.

    James

     

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