Ada: yes or no?

Gerard Beekmans gerard at linuxfromscratch.org
Thu May 16 16:23:39 PDT 2002


On Thu, May 16, 2002 at 10:36:07PM +0200, Matthias Benkmann wrote:
> It all comes down to philosophy. There are a lot of good reasons against
> including it in the LFS book:
> 
> 1. most people don't need it (at least right now)
> 2. it goes against the minimality principle of LFS
> 3. makes chapter 5 more difficult
> 4. increases compile time

All agreed.
 
> The reasons for adding Ada are fewer
> 
> 1. without it, GCC can't rebuild itself full-featured.
> 2. if we provide our own precompile Ada-package it doesn't make chapter 5
> that much more difficult.
> 
> But at least point 1 has a lot of philosophical weight.

Yes and I'd hate to simply knowing that my system will not be capable of
compiling something. I may not need Ada, or package xyz for that matter,
but I always felt secure in knowing "if I ever need it, I can just install
it".

But, the drawbacks of adding Ada are big and I'm pretty sure they outweigh
the usefulness (seeing that the vast majority of people probably don't know
what Ada is and/or need/use it).

But I also feel morally obliged to at least _somehow_ provide means to get
your Ada if you need it. I'm thinking about an Ada-hint written and simply
add a line in the book:

	If you need Ada, get this hint, build GCC in chapter 5 and 6 according to
	those instructions and ignore the ones here.

How does that sound for a compromise?

-- 
Gerard Beekmans
www.linuxfromscratch.org

-*- If Linux doesn't have the solution, you have the wrong problem -*-
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