I can no longer remember when I first encountered a
make program, but I imagine that, as with many programmers, I was trying to build someone else’s software. And like many programmers, I was probably surprised and seduced by the simplicity of
make’s syntax without realizing the hidden depths and power of this universal program.
After many years of working with a variety of real makefiles, blogging about my findings, and answering GNU
make questions from my blog readers, I gained real-world insights and a deep appreciation for GNU
make. Many of these insights came from founding a company called Electric Cloud, where one of my projects was to completely replicate the functionality of GNU
make. To do so, I absorbed the GNU
make manual; wrote ...