[erlang-questions] Controversial subject of the day: tabs and spaces for indentation

Valentin Micic <>
Thu Feb 6 08:49:36 CET 2014

Dear Bengt,

I'd like to ask you a question… when you say:

"These are opinions, not facts."

Do you mean it in a way that "what follows are my opinions and not facts"?
Or do you mean that views expressed by an email that you're quoting are (in your opinion) opinions and not facts?
Or both?

And, if you do not mind indulging me for a moment -- why do you think it is necessary to put forward such a preamble?

Kind reagards


On 06 Feb 2014, at 9:30 AM, Bengt Kleberg wrote:

> Greetings,
> These are opinions, not facts.
> It is correct that the project owner has decides what goes into the
> project. Why would it be a bad idea for this owner to automatically
> format every thing that is checked in?
> On the plus side (s)he would be able to accept more code this way and
> appear nicer to would be contributers.
> bengt
> On Wed, 2014-02-05 at 22:18 +0100, Loïc Hoguin wrote:
>> On 02/05/2014 09:48 PM, Raoul Duke wrote:
>>>> One line? That's the worst solution ever. You break every tool ever, and
>>>> even make *cat* and *less* useless (pun intended).
>>>> Code is text, so keep it readable without requiring any special crappy
>>>> editor.
>>> yes and no. these are the problems and solutions we have to trade off.
>>> what is the lesser evil in the long run? probably people disagree.
>> ???
>> There is no evil, this is at most a minor annoyance that comes with 
>> pointless debates shrouded by blind religious beliefs.
>> The answer is always "submit code the way the project owner wants you 
>> to" and no amount of debating is going to change that, ever.
>> It's not even just tabs vs spaces, plenty other minor things are the 
>> author's choice, including number of columns, newline characters, source 
>> code encoding, but also major things like mandatory documentation or 
>> tests and backward compatibility.
>> There is no one true way of doing things, for this or for anything else. 
>> It's just a matter of choice.
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