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All the Perl that's Practical to Extract and Report

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  • Seems to me the trick is to separate grammar changes from BEGIN blocks. That is, you have explicit blocks which do nothing but change the grammar. They can't execute code, they can't call eval, they can't declare variables, they can't load modules (except other grammar-only modules). They would then allow two critical things for tools:

    1) They're safe to execute.
    2) The tools can be made aware of grammar changes.

    It might not even need to be as restrictive as all that, maybe just that grammar changes happ
    • The problem is that the grammar is code itself.
      • That may not be a problem if the code is never run...

        If "=" is mapped to sub equals, you shouldn't need to run equals while parsing, right?
        • You don't understand. The grammar itself is a class. The parsing primitives are methods. It is actual Perl 6 code that does the parsing, you don't get a BNF for it.
          • The parsing primitives are controllable and, fortunately, NOT arbitrary code.

            And so they don't present a decidability problem, at least for the parsing primitives that are available out the box.

            If we DO allow arbitrary grammar modifications, and those modifications will result in the execution of arbitrary code, well then we're back into the decidability quagmire again.

            In fact, if arbitrary grammar chances are trivially associational with arbitrary compile-time execution then that should pretty much clearly
            • Go over the synopses again then... You can definitely define grammars in terms of code.

              However, as long as this is trusted code, which you can determine by introspecting it, I don't think this is a problem.