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Re: [Help-bash] first part

From: Matthew Cengia
Subject: Re: [Help-bash] first part
Date: Sun, 22 May 2016 06:34:17 +1000
User-agent: Mutt/1.5.21 (2010-09-15)

Hi Richard,

On 2016-05-21 12:49, Richard Lohman wrote:
> A couple of points
> - Your example solves the same problem; it would seem that there is more
> than one way to solve problems in Linux. Who knew?

Who indeed.

> - My take on providing examples is focus precisely on the atomic question
> asked, not to assume the problem space (is the OP using a file containing
> nothing but data formatted as shown? I don't know). I saw the original post
> as how to extract a substring from text with '-' as the field separator. I
> really think awk is a good use case for that problem. Would it be better to
> process the entire file with awk in one shot rather than a line at a time?
> Absolutely, but again, that was not the original question. I would leave it
> to the OP to work out feeding awk and iteration.

That's one way to look at it. The other is this: If a professional
expert in any field did only the bare minimum to solve a problem, is
that ethical? For example, if a bicycle repair person only replaces a
tyre tube when they can clearly see that it will be re-punctured by the
nail stuck in the tyre, isn't that wrong?

My point is that suggesting that, "extrapolating from your description,
and assuming you'll tell me if I've done so incorrectly, I think you
should re-work your solution as such, because it is more robust" is
better than just solving the immediate problem that's in front of you,
if you're capable of doing so.

> At first I was a bit offended by your opening statement. But then I looked
> through some past conversations on the listserv only to find that I am not
> the only person with whom you have trouble being polite. Most unfortunate,
> given your obvious command of the shell.

Admittedly, I've had plenty of experience with Eduardo's style of
answering questions, so am perhaps more used to it than others, but
trying to be objective: there was no impoliteness in his message. He
succinctly and objectively stated the solution you proposed was
problematic ("bad advice"). He criticised the solution, and not its
author, didn't belabour the point, make fun, abuse, or insult. He said
"this is a bad idea, here's a better one, based on what I think the OP
is trying to do."

I, personally, think that's a pretty reasonable approach.

Matthew Cengia

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