A usability gap in fingerprint rendering and parsing

Daniel Farina drfarina at acm.org
Fri Jan 6 11:25:38 CET 2012

On Fri, Jan 6, 2012 at 2:17 AM, Werner Koch <wk at gnupg.org> wrote:
> On Fri,  6 Jan 2012 00:12, drfarina at acm.org said:
>> Should that become the default?  What's the use of nibbles that cannot
> No, --with-colons is not for humans.  OTOH, humans are not able to
> properly read and compare 40 digits hex strings without the help of
> delimiters like spaces.  Now, if you want to cut+paste things you need
> to convert them
>   gpg -er $(echo PASTE-HERE |tr -d ' ')
> might be a solution.
>> I also prefer to read the whitespace, but in that case --recipient can
>> be taught to ignore whitespace when interpreting a stream of
> We could make this work but you would need to enclose it in quotes.
> What a bout a new option to display the fingerprint in a consensed
> format.  For example --fpr instead of --with-fingerprint.

By quotes, you mean so bash will pass it as one argv?  This is
actually the very first thing I tried: I think anyone familiar with
the command line will immediately see the spaces and quote it, so one

gpg -er 'abcd ef12 ...'

People are also used to quoting things like URLs, file names, patterns
for grep or sed, and so on.  So I think that's a totally acceptable
thing...in fact, doing it any other way would seem "weird."

If that works, it'd be great to avoid any extra options.  I also agree
that the colon notation is pretty ugly.


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