Commandline Tool? Command-line Tool? Command Line Tool?

Sorry for the repetitive title, but Apache Taverna is preparing a release that will include the Taverna Commandline Tool, or is it Command Line Tool, or Command-Line Tool? Or just Command Line?  Now you see the problem. The name for the tool is different throughout the documentation. Not good.

The project lead, not a native English speaker as it turns out, requested that those of us who are native English speakers weigh in on the correct name for the tool. Challenge accepted. How hard can this be? I know compound adjectives are frequently hyphenated when they modify a noun (think, Red-headed woodpecker), but maybe there is a different software-development convention for this particular term?

First, look online

It turns out there is some inconsistency in the online use of command line tool versus command-line tool.  First, I found some examples without hyphens: What is the Command Line Tools Package? and Top 10 Command Line Tools. Then I found a different use, from Wikipedia, that was hyphenated: Command-line interface. But the article has an “issues” flag and, oh yes, it’s Wikipedia; not a good academic reference. I next found Command-Line Reference from Microsoft – with a hyphen. And then I found another from Microsoft, this time without a hyphen: Using command line tools for networking information. And finally, two more from Microsoft – with hyphens: Windows 7 command-line tools and programs and How to create a command-line toolkit for Windows. It seems like the hyphens have an edge, but I wanted a more definitive answer. Continue reading “Commandline Tool? Command-line Tool? Command Line Tool?”

ASF CMS Editing Hints for New Committers

I was mesmerized by the abundance of resources for new Apache Software Foundation (ASF) committers. As a result of this bounty, it took more time than I expected to make my initial commit. The process now seems straightforward, but way back, say, 24 hours ago, things were much fuzzier.

Two resources are key. If you’ve watched Rob Weir’s video tutorial and read the Get Started Editing a Page link in the CMS Reference, good for you! You are ahead of where I was. These references are probably good enough for most people, although one important point is missing: The copy I was editing did not match the live web page. I needed to update my local version before editing, which sounds obvious now, but that’s because I finally understand how the process works. Continue reading “ASF CMS Editing Hints for New Committers”