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Really crummy error messages, was Re: Ada files now checked in
- To: Gabriel Dos Reis <gdr at codesourcery dot com>
- Subject: Really crummy error messages, was Re: Ada files now checked in
- From: Phil Edwards <pedwards at disaster dot jaj dot com>
- Date: Sun, 7 Oct 2001 17:35:47 -0400
- Cc: dewar at gnat dot com, fw at deneb dot enyo dot de, bosch at gnat dot com, dnovillo at redhat dot com, gcc at gcc dot gnu dot org, kenner at vlsi1 dot ultra dot nyu dot edu, zack at codesourcery dot com
On Sun, Oct 07, 2001 at 04:19:16PM +0200, Gabriel Dos Reis wrote:
> firstname.lastname@example.org writes:
> | j.adb:3:04: "xyz" is undefined
> | compared to the c message
> | j.c:1: `asdf' undeclared (first use this function)
> For a non-native English speaker like me, I have always questioned
> myself why the latter choice (which I find odd and difficult to read)
> is current practice and not the former. FWIW, I would suggest that we
> switch to Robert's suggestion.
Even native English speakers, like me, get confused, and here's why:
For "first use this function" to be a correct English sentence [fragment],
there is only one possible parse, and it's not what is intended. "First use
this function" is an /imperative/ with "use" as a verb (pronounced with a 'z'
sound), and always leaves new users wondering, "first use /which/ function?"
But GCC wants "use" to be a noun, pronounced with an 's' sound. What we
really want to say is any of:
j.c:1: `asdf' undeclared (first use in this function)
j.c:1: `asdf' undeclared (first time used in this function)
j.c:1: `asdf' undeclared (first occurrence in this function)
(Although maybe "is undeclared" would be better for C than "is undefined.")
Please, let's fix this.
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