Template strings and templates

Allen Wirfs-Brock allen at wirfs-brock.com
Fri Aug 3 08:52:31 PDT 2012

On Aug 2, 2012, at 12:02 PM, Axel Rauschmayer wrote:

> I love the new name “template strings” for “quasi literals”. Only “tag” seem inferior to “quasi handler”, because that former term is already used in HTML.

I didn't intentionally rename "quasi handler" to "tag".  I titled the section of the specification that defines the syntax for specifying a handler as "Tagged Quasis"  (after the meeting retitled to "Tagged Templates").  And used the terms "tagged quasi" and "untagged quasi" in the slide deck I presented at the meeting.

I believe I picked up the term "tag" from the BNF used on the Wiki proposal page http://wiki.ecmascript.org/doku.php?id=harmony:quasis#literal_portion_syntax . It says (approximately):
  QuasiLiteral ::
             QuasiTag ` LiteralPortion QuasiLiteralTail

The term "handler" is also used in the proposal, but it doesn't appear that either "handler" or "tag"  was designated as the "official" terminology.

I think it is fine to refer to a function that are called when evaluating a template string as "template string handler". That will probably often get abbreviated to just "handler".

However, in talking about the syntactic forms it seems awkward to say "a template string with a handler" or a "handled template string".  In those situations it may flow better to refer to the expression that provides the handler value as the "tag" and hence we would say a "tagged template string".

I don't have anything invested in any of this terminology, so I'd happy to adjust it for something that is clearer to users. 


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