There is no configure stage for SWIG to utilise when generating code. If there are C macros in the Octave headers (as a result of an Octave configure) that turn features on and off and they are officially documented, then we can use those. However to deal with changing apis, NOT features, an API version is needed. APIs always change even if not intentional, someone will someday mess up and we will need an API version number to fix these kind of errors.
The string version OCTAVE_API_VERSION is absolutely useless for use by the C preprocessor.
If users of Octave, such as SWIG find the API version number useful, I strongly urge for it to be re-instated. Otherwise I propose dropping support for Octave in SWIG 3.0 as it will taint the SWIG reputation for not working and provide too much of a support burden on SWIG maintainers such as myself. I've started a discussion on the swig-devel mailing list. Please join in. Can someone familiar with Octave please set up a discussion with the Octave maintainers and us SWIG maintainers.
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