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RFC: pack()ing long words

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From:
David Cantrell
Date:
August 13, 2012 04:41
Subject:
RFC: pack()ing long words
Message ID:
20120813114101.GA31598@bytemark.barnyard.co.uk
pack() and unpack() can handle words of 1, 2, 4, and (if you built your
perl right) 8 bytes.  And I use the same magic characters (although
without using pack and unpack) in Data::Hexdumper.

However, I want to extend it to support 16 byte words and, indeed, to
support any other length words.  3 byte words, for example.

I'd like to remain as compatible as possible with the characters used in
pack()'s templates, but there's nothing there for what I want.

So, can I propose that we pick a character for this purpose and at least
define some syntax for specifying a word length, endian-ness, and repeat
count for it, even if it isn't implemented yet?

Something like this perhaps:
  X5,4>

which means:
  X  - whatever letter we choose
  5  - word length
  ,4 - optional repeat count
  >  - optional endian-ness

-- 
David Cantrell | Enforcer, South London Linguistic Massive

    Fashion label: n: a liferaft for personalities
    which lack intrinsic buoyancy

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