You could put globbing elsewhere -- have individual commands glob by their own logic. DOS variants did this, with the obvious result that ... different commands glob differently.

To my mind, this is correct behavior; individual programs should be able to interpret file-mask characters in ways that are appropriate to context. The system should provide services to reinforce the conventional interpretation, but not to enforce it.

rename *.old *.new could never work in bash (which is part of why the Linux rename command takes a regex as its first argument -- yes, more powerful, but less intuitive) -- bash would interpret the second parameter as {all existing files ending in ".new"} and pass them as arguments, which is worse than useless.

(I started to give an example of non-file-related meanings of wildcard characters, but ran out of space; let me know if that would be useful.)


@woozle @dredmorbius

"more powerful, less intuitive" = guiding principle of all software development

@sydneyfalk @dredmorbius

Except for web and GUI, where the guiding principle is "all features are technical debt", typically followed by "Cut them down. Cut them ALL down."

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