[Python-Dev] Python and the Linux Standard Base (LSB)

Barry Warsaw barry at python.org
Thu Nov 30 16:20:25 CET 2006

Hash: SHA1

On Nov 30, 2006, at 9:40 AM, Talin wrote:

> Greg Ewing wrote:
>> Barry Warsaw wrote:
>>> I'm not sure I like ~/.local though  - -- it seems counter to the  
>>> app-specific dot-file approach old  schoolers like me are used to.
>> Problems with that are starting to show, though.
>> There's a particular Unix account that I've had for
>> quite a number of years, accumulating much stuff.
>> Nowadays when I do ls -a ~, I get a directory
>> listing several screens long...
>> The whole concept of "hidden" files seems ill-
>> considered to me, anyway. It's too easy to forget
>> that they're there. Putting infrequently-referenced
>> stuff in a non-hidden location such as ~/local
>> seems just as good and less magical to me.
> On OS X, you of course have ~/Library. I suppose the Linux  
> equivalent would be something like ~/lib.

I forgot to add in my previous follow up why I'd prefer ~/.local over  
~/local.  It's a namespace thing.  Dot-files in my home directory are  
like __names__ in Python -- they don't belong to me.  Non-dot-names  
are my namespace so things like ~/local constrain what I can call my  
own files.

When I switched to OS X for most of my desktops, I had several  
collisions in this namespace.  I keep all my homedir files under  
subversion and could not check out my environment on my new Mac until  
I named a few directories (this was exacerbated by the case- 
insensitive file system).

I think in general OS X has less philosophical problem with colliding  
in the non-dot namespace because most OS X users don't ever /see/  
their home directory.  They see ~/Desktop.  Maybe that's what all the  
kids are into these days, but I still think dot-names are better to  
use for a wider acceptance.

- -Barry

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