I am the official maintainer of the Vim syntax file for Tcl

Back in November 2006 I sent Bram Moolenaar a patch to the syntax file for Tcl so that Vim would get better support of some commands' optional arguments. Doing that ended up with Bram saying that he had made me the official maintainter.

Now, irony aside of having a Python developer maintain the Tcl syntax file, I warned Bram that I was not in any way a Tcl enthusiast or expert. I had just written some Tcl code to learn the language and noticed the syntax highlighting was incomplete.

But I figured that if no one had discovered the shortcomings I had then it wouldn't be that much. Hell, the last guy had retired and it had not made a difference. So I told Bram I was willing to be the maintainer since I have passing knowledge of how to define Vim syntax files thanks to my work to create Python's python.vim file automatically. Plus I figured I owed the Vim community a little volunteer work since I have been using Vim for years along with havning never donated any money to the project (poor university student and all).

But I had not heard back from Bram about the change. And I had a svn checkout that never touched the Tcl syntax file every time I updated. I was rather disappointed that my change had not gone in. I pretty much dropped my idea of learning more Tcl by writing a Tcl script to parse the manpages of Tcl to auto-generate the syntax file.

Then today happened. Since my hard drive got replaced I was deciding how I wanted to update Vim (probably going to use Aap to get Vim). I noticed that the download section has a separate part that tells you how to update the runtime files themselves without touching Vim itself using Aap. That made me wonder if there was some disconnect between the svn tree and what was actually put out.

Sure enough, the runtime files that Aap fetches from Vim's FTP server are much newer than what is in the svn or cvs repositories. Turns out I am the official maintainer of the tcl.vim file after all. Guess I should put that Tcl script back on my todo list and eventually get a Google Code project open for it.

Now it just makes me wonder where Vim's development is done if the svn repository is out of sync with what is on the FTP server. Just goes to show that every open source project has its own development style.