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Enrico Colombini wrote:
> Also, I haven't found out a practical way to write long strings (~5 kchars)
> in a script, so that they could be properly read and edited by people using
> an 80-char/line editor. Using a .. line concatenation to write a long
> string as multiple source lines raises the above problem.

What's wrong with a long string between [[ ]] ?
You could say then:

room["lua list"].describe = [[
Many lua programmers are in this room, typing away at their keyboards. 
On the wall hang posters made of printed-out ASCII art. 
Etc, etc, etc... ]]

As for the answer to your other question, it turned out to be a problem
with the C library on some systems. Please read Edgar Toernig's mails.

"No one knows true heroes, for they speak not of their greatness." -- 
Daniel Remar.
Björn De Meyer