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gawk: Extension Design

 
 C.5 Extension API Design
 ========================
 
 This minor node documents the design of the extension API, including a
 discussion of some of the history and problems that needed to be solved.
 
    The first version of extensions for 'gawk' was developed in the
 mid-1990s and released with 'gawk' 3.1 in the late 1990s.  The basic
 mechanisms and design remained unchanged for close to 15 years, until
 2012.
 
    The old extension mechanism used data types and functions from 'gawk'
 itself, with a "clever hack" to install extension functions.
 
    'gawk' included some sample extensions, of which a few were really
 useful.  However, it was clear from the outset that the extension
 mechanism was bolted onto the side and was not really well thought out.
 

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