I am trying to write a parser for a text-based file format. Files in
this format frequently become very large. While the specification
specifically allows applications to crash on large files, I know
several people who have taken to editing these files by hand in
Notepad or other basic text editors. This format is not at all
friendly for this type of editing, and it is extremely tedious work,
but their programs all crash due to the size of these files.
What I really want to know is:
I had been using File.readline and saving a lot of temporary files via
tempfile.rb (http://www.ruby-doc.org/stdlib/libdoc/tempfile/rdoc/index.html).
However, I have heard that File.readline is in fact equivalent to
File.read.split('\n').each, which would really ruin my purpose of not
loading the whole file. I'd really like to keep this in ruby, as I
want to package the whole thing via the wonderful rubyscipt2exe, as
well as, of course, a standard rubygem.
What I would actually really love is if there was a way to read lines
4 through 7 without reading the whole file.
My current method has made the program not nearly as beautiful as ruby
ought to be.

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Daniel Brumbaugh Keeney
Devi Web Development
Devi.WebMaster / gMail.com
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