Hi all. I've been thinking about stringification, forms, and things like that.

As exegesis 7 points out, sprintf, pack, and the forms language all essentially take data and specifies how to turn it into a "string" (I'm using "string" loosely here). Likewise with .perl -- it takes some data, and turns it into a string formatted in a particular way.

Perl 6 has a general language (grammars) for taking some input and a grammar, and separating the data from the formatting, as it were.

What's made Perl 6 so much more powerful in this area is the grouping of regexen into grammars.

I'm wondering if we can't come up with a language that does for output formatting what grammars do for input formatting.

For example, say we could create something called an outputgrammar. We could do something like this:

grammar XMLIn {...}
outputgrammar XMLout {...}

My thought is that you would then be able to read an XML document using the XMLin grammar, do a transform or two, and then rewrite it almost identically (except the changes) with the outputgrammar.

Ideally, it'd be possible to specify one grammar that would act both for parsing output and formatting input. This may not be possible, but I like the idea.

It may already be possible to mock up some of these things (a hash array of sprintf formats?), but I'd be interested in seeing some discussion on what's possible.

Of course, if this has already been discussed, I'd love to read about it -- please send links.


| Name: Tim Nelson                 | Because the Creator is,        |
| E-mail: wayl...@wayland.id.au    | I am                           |

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