Massive libxo-zation that breaks everything

Alfred Perlstein bright at
Tue Mar 3 01:30:33 UTC 2015

> On Mar 2, 2015, at 4:22 PM, Andrey Chernov <ache at> wrote:
>> On 02.03.2015 22:55, Julian Elischer wrote:
>>> On 3/2/15 5:27 AM, Alfred Perlstein wrote:
>>>> On 3/2/15 4:14 AM, Julian Elischer wrote:
>>>>> On 3/1/15 10:49 AM, Harrison Grundy wrote:
>>>>> Thanks!
>>>>> That does seem useful, but I'm not sure I see the reasoning behind
>>>>> putting into base, over a port or package, since processing XML in base
>>>>> is a pain, and it can't serve up JSON or HTML without additional
>>>>> utilities anyway.
>>>>> (If I'm reviving a long-settled thing, let me know and I'll drop it.
>>>>> I'm
>>>>> trying to understand the use case for this.)
>>>> To me it would almost seem more useful to have a programmable filter
>>>> for which you could produce
>>>> parse grammars to parse the output of various programs..
>>>> thus
>>>> ifconfig -a | xmlize -g ifconfig | your-favourite-xml-parser
>>>> with a set of grammars in /usr/share/xmlize/
>>>> then we could use it for out-of-tree programs as well if we wrote
>>>> grammars for them..
>>>> The sentiment of machine-readable output is nice, but I think it's
>>>> slightly off target.
>>>> we shouldn't have to change all out utilities, and it isn't going to
>>>> help at all with 3rd party apps,
>>>> e.g. samba stuff. A generally easy to program output grammar parser
>>>> would be truely useful.
>>>> and not just for FreeBSD.
>>>> I've been watching with an uncomfortable feeling, but it's taken me a
>>>> while to put my
>>>> finger on what it was..
>>> Are you sure it's not the hairs on the back of your neck standing up
>>> due to NIH?
>>> Juniper has been doing this for years and it's very useful for them.
>> I'm not saying the ability to generate machine readable output is wrong,
>> but that the 'unix way' would be to make a filter for it. It seems that
>> the noisy people don't
>> agree with me so I will not stand in the way of progress..
> I agree. Even if someone starts with json and xml only, it will need
> some 3rd format soon, and adding any new format have real possibility to
> break all already existent (like adding json+xml breaks plain text in
> pipes). Moreover, it violates Unix principle 'one tool == one general
> function' and lots of other rules like Eric Raymond ones, making each
> program looks like systemd. It makes harder to merge changes from other
> BSDs too.
> Proper way to do this thing is to back out all changes and write
> completely separate templates-based parser - xml/json writer.

Read the library. It doesn't care what output format it needs. It is up to the translation layer to do it. You could even do a csv format or most any other structured output format without changing the userland utils. 

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