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Re: "svn diff" and "svn merge" sittin' in a tree

From: Colin Putney <cputney_at_whistler.net>
Date: 2002-02-15 23:44:34 CET

On Friday, February 15, 2002, at 01:08 PM, Karl Fogel wrote:

>> I don't think we've had an answer to question 2) yet, though. Here's
>> my gut feel on the situation.
>> I think the problem is that the documentation for diff3 is
>> misleading. AFICT, the whole "common ancestor" thing is just the
>> common use case.
> Not even -- at least for me, it's been by far the least common case in
> CVS merges, and I expect that will be true in Subversion as well,
> since the tasks are basically the same. At most the common ancestor
> is involved in the first merge to a given line, and after that it's
> not involved. (One could call the left-side source of the merged
> range a "common ancestor" each time, in a sense, if one always merges
> *all* unmerged changes from the branch line the same target line, and
> plans to continue doing so, but that's often not the case, and even
> then it wouldn't be *the* common ancestor, it would just be one of
> many "ancestors" to the head of the target line.)
> Completely agree that the diff3 documentation is misleading, am
> tempted to put it even more strongly than that. :-)

Well, I'm assuming that diff3 probably wasn't written with full-blown
concurrent versioning systems in mind. As a stand-alone tool, the design
is aimed at the simple problem of sharing non-version-controlled files.
I write something, send you an interim copy for review and keep working.
You make some changes and send it back to me. Now I've got two files to
reconcile. diff3 solves this problem perfectly.

Concurrent versioning systems like CVS and svn introduce way more
complexity, and it's probably unfair to expect the writers and
documenters of diff3 to have anticipated it. I should have said that the
diff3 documentation is misleading *in the context of CVS and svn.*


Colin Putney www.whistler.com
Information Systems (877) 932-0606
Whistler.com (604) 935-0035 x221

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Received on Sat Oct 21 14:37:08 2006

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