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

Vlad Dumitrescu <>
Thu Feb 6 12:35:13 CET 2014


On 6 Feb 2014 12:27, "Bengt Kleberg" <> wrote:
>
> Greetings,
>
> These are my opinions, not facts.
>
> Does your "erl-indent" program format according to the current OTP style
> guide? It would be very good if that was the case.

It uses erlang - mode to indent. I certainly assume that it uses the style
recommended by otp.

Not all otp source files are idempotent under the indentation, so it might
mean that not all are following the otp style.

/vlad

>
> bengt
>
> On Thu, 2014-02-06 at 10:43 +0100, Vlad Dumitrescu wrote:
> > On Thu, Feb 6, 2014 at 10:31 AM, Lukas Larsson <> wrote:
> > > On Thu, Feb 6, 2014 at 9:38 AM, Loïc Hoguin <>
wrote:
> > >>
> > >> Plus this doesn't help your code get merged at all. If you submit
code
> > >> with broken whitespace, then tools will also display this whitespace
change.
> > >> You can of course hide whitespace changes, but the problem is that
> > >> whitespace does matter in some places, so you're basically hiding
> > >> potentially important information by doing that.
> > >>
> > > This is in my opinion the reason why it would be a very bad thing to
do a
> > > huge commit that changes the current whitespace format of a project to
> > > another. It is already very hard to figure out what change could have
caused
> > > a bug without having to deal with whitespace changes in the middle of
a
> > > diff.
> >
> > Yes, if such a thing would be done, the best time is as a separate
> > commit right before a release, this will minimize the number of
> > merges/rebases with mixed styles of indentation. Of course, as Lukas
> > points out, if diffing with older code, then you have a problem.
> >
> > Anyway, I have a suggestion for a workaround at
> > https://gist.github.com/vladdu/8841089. Put those files in your ~/bin
> > (which should be on $PATH), edit them to match your system and style
> > and you can reindent files simply by running "erl-indent
> > /path/to/myfile.erl". It still requires to have emacs installed, but I
> > can live with that.
> >
> > The downside is that if you want to use only spaces, then the whole
> > file will be changed to use them. The really big downside is that with
> > this tool there will be even less incitament to change the indentation
> > style...
> >
> > regards,
> > Vlad
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> > 
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>
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