why does "cut" print fields in original order?
Robert P. J. Day
rpjday at crashcourse.ca
Wed Nov 21 15:57:50 UTC 2007
On Wed, 21 Nov 2007, Dave Ihnat wrote:
> Actually, I originally wrote cut & paste, but after the initial release,
> left it on its own. Thankfully, David MacKenzie and Jim Meyering (neither
> of whom I've ever met or communicated with) picked up the ball and kept
> working on the programs. (And whatever prompted me to spend the time to
> recreate these programs? I was working on a Unix clone called 'Venix',
> and was annoyed that it didn't have these commands.)
> I wrote the programs to be as close to identical to the original Unix
> System 5 man page as I could, and "reverse-engineered" it from the man
> page description of behavior and options, deliberately not ever referring
> to or accessing the original source, since it was copyrighted material
> of AT&T. At the time I was reverse engineering it, I asked numerous
> questions on Usenet as to whether I should fix obvious bugs or deviations
> in behavior, or extend the command; the overwhelming response was "make
> it behave like the 'real' command".
> Now, as to why it does what it does? I don't know for sure, since
> I didn't go find whoever wrote the original and ask. But I can
> guess--"do one thing, and do it well." Cut is supposed to get fields
> from a line-delimited data stream. Period. Rearrangement is an added
> function--one that might be useful, certainly; but that can be done via
> other shell tools.
yes, i now appreciate that cut's behaviour is the very efficient
technique of treating the data as a one-way stream, so i'm good with
that. so lay off already. ya hear me?? LAY OFF!!!
double shot espresso: accept no substitutes.
Robert P. J. Day
Linux Consulting, Training and Annoying Kernel Pedantry
Waterloo, Ontario, CANADA
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