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From Stefan Bodewig <>
Subject String -> Ressource (was Re: archivefileset resources)
Date Fri, 23 Mar 2007 05:30:06 GMT
On Wed, 21 Mar 2007, Matt Benson <> wrote:

> I think what is needed is a well-known syntax specification for
> specifying a string representation of [resource-type][String to pass
> to constructor] e.g. "file?/foo/bar.baz",
> "url?", "string?blah blah blah".

This is so I can say


instead of

  <url url=""/>


Sounds right.

> One may recall this as something I've been after for awhile--I
> consider it the "next step" for resource handling in Ant.  For code
> compartmentalization we could probably add the code to generate a
> Resource from a String to ResourceUtils, but IH would know how to
> use e.g. RU.getResource(Project, String) to set Resource attributes

I guess we'd need something dynamic, i.e. there has to be a way to
register a ressource prefix with RU so that I can have string
representations for my own ressource types.

>  (for BC, FileResource would be the default).

For BC we'd have to keep the File-argument setters anyway.  IH could
be changed to use setSrc(Ressource) in favor of setSrc(File) and use
the later if no ressource mapping was found.  No real need to have a
default in RU.  OTOH it might be convenient for users when they can
simply omit the "file?" prefix for files.

> This is to all intents and purposes the only way, IMHO, to seriously
> take advantage in Ant tasks of our early decision to design
> getOutputStream() into the Resource contract.  You'll notice my use
> of the "?" character above to indicate the preceding text was the
> name of a currently available type.  I used "?" because for xmlns as
> well as fs reasons I'm pretty sure this character should NOT be a
> colon.

I agree that a colon would be a bad choice, at least if we allow file
ressources to be specified without a prefix.  I don't really see any
conflict with xmlns.

> However I'm not sure what the RIGHT "trigger character" is and IMO
> this is the only outstanding question stopping us from adding this
> feature to Ant.

bikeshedding? 8-)

"?" isn't pretty but works for me.  "@" would probably work nicely
(file@/usr/local/bin/xemacs) but may get unwieldy if you use constant
ressource specifications inside of macrodefs (you'd have to double the
"@").  No obvious choice IMHO, I'd take whatever you pick.

> Aside from allowing IH to transform a String into a given Resource,
> you'll see that tasks using mappers can choose to pass the mapped
> names to this same factory code and work with resources, or they can
> behave as normal and they will break if a user tries to map to an
> arbitrary resource type

Sounds good.

> (assuming its string representation can't be misinterpreted as a
> file, a situation I hope we'll be able to prevent esp. by choosing
> the right "trigger character").

There won't be any such character.  AFAIK the only forbidden character
in Unix filenames is a / and this obviously is a very bad choice for
the "trigger".  "?" and "*" are unlikely in filenames, but both are
used as wildcards in patterns - now that you mention using the string
representation in mappers:

   <globmapper from="file?*.xml" to="url?http://home/*.html"/>

Here the "?" might look ambiguos.

OK, what is left?  "#", "="?  Or "url("?


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