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    SubjectRe: Why side-effects on open(2) are evil. (was Re: [RFD w/info-PATCH]device arguments from lookup)
    On Wed, 23 May 2001, Daniel Phillips wrote:

    > > > > *boggle*
    > > > >
    > > > >[general sense of unease]
    > >
    > > I fully agree with Oliver. It's an abomination.
    > We are, or at least, I am, investigating this question purely on
    > technical grounds - name calling is a noop. I'd be happy to find a
    > real reason why this is a bad idea but so far none has been
    > presented.

    I will agree that the thing can be done in principle. You're not going to
    find anyone who's going to argue that part. All other things being equal,
    I actually think it's a neat idea.

    The part that is a problem is people, namely people who write programs.
    They've had decades to expect that directories are not also files, and if
    they happen to do things like check whether a file is not a directory
    before opening it, it's _our fault_ if they get confused.

    Consider the recent subtle change to fork() that was reversed because it
    uncovered an unforseen bug in bash. The proposed change is not at all
    subtle, is entirely without precedent, and is likely to break much.

    "Love the dolphins," she advised him. "Write by W.A.S.T.E.."

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