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At Tue, 10 Feb 2009 16:30:55 +0900,
Brent Roman wrote:
> I always liked the new hash symbol key colon syntax introduced in 1.9
>
> h  dog: "bark", cat: "meow", horse: "neigh", programmer: "z z z"}
>
> It's especially nice in method invocations:
>
> animal.noises dog: "bark", cat: "meow", horse: "neigh"
>
> Is anyone working working on porting this back to 1.8?
> Anyone else interested in this?

Yes.  Backporting syntactic changes is a big part of the plan for ruby
1.8.8, although some features in 1.9 can never be integrated into 1.8
because of compatibility constraints or implementation limitations.
Considering those unfortunate cases, I am thinking of making the 1.8
interpreter at least capable in parsing 1.9 specific constructs
without error, although it may not be able to actually run it.

That way, one would be able to write a script that supports both 1.8
and 1.9 without avoiding 1.9 specific features.

    # Note that the version comparison is considered as the last
    # resort and for example, object respond_to? test is far more
    # preferable and appropriate whenever applicable.
    if RUBY_VERSION > 1.9.1"
      # fansastic code for 1.9 making full use of shiny new features
    else # This part will be removed when you drop 1.8 support.
      # legacy code that works for 1.8
    end

Honestly, I don't want ruby developers to hesitate to adopt 1.9
features just because of the market/customer needs for supporting ruby
1.8, nor do like the situation where every developer is forced to make
the ultimate choice among "go for 1.9, drop 1.8", "stay at 1.8, use
1.9 only as a faster 1.8", and "maintain two sets of codebase".

Improving compatibility with 1.9 will help those who are attracted to
1.9 features but still have to work with 1.8, and ease the pain of
supporting multiple versions of ruby.

This has been and is still going to be a tough challenge, but I
believe ruby 1.8 has to move forward (keeping compatibility!) with 1.9
to achieve gradual migration.

P.S.
I will take a close look at Shyouhei's patch when I have the time.
I'm busy right now because I'm moving this weekend.

Regards,

--
Akinori MUSHA / http://akinori.org/

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