[Python-Dev] PEP 4XX: pyzaa "Improving Python ZIP Application Support"

Stephen J. Turnbull stephen at xemacs.org
Sat May 4 09:50:27 CEST 2013

Steven D'Aprano writes:

 > > Give us a non-MS example, please.

 > I'm afraid I don't understand your question.

There were two problems mentioned.  Paul worries about 4-letter
extensions under PowerShell.  You mentioned conflicts in Linux file
managers.  In both cases, a bug on Windows in detecting Microsoft
products would kill (or at least seriously maim) a shell or file
manager.  I doubt many have ever existed, and surely they were
detected *and* corrected pretty much immediately.

My point is that such bug-awareness would not extend as strongly to
extensions used by third-party free software.

 > Are you suggesting that four letter extensions are restricted to
 > Microsoft products?

No, of course not.

 > Common 4+ letter extensions include .html, .tiff, .jpeg, .mpeg,
 > .midi, .java and .torrent.

All of which (except perhaps .java and .torrent, which I bet are most
commonly invoked not from shells but from IDEs and webbrowsers which
have their own internal association databases) are commonly
abbreviated to three letters on Windows, including in HTTP URLs which
should have no such issues at all.  That is consistent with my point
(and Paul's, I believe).

It doesn't prove anything, but given the decreasing importance of
extensions for file typing on all systems, I think there's little
penalty to being shortsighted and following the 3-character convention
for extensions, especially on Windows.

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