Has anyone ever built a diff specifically for .maxpat files?
Yes, I know you can use any standard diff for text files on the Max JSON format, but the problem is that very minor changes in the Max patch can result in a re-ordering of the objects in the .maxpat that will completely confuse a conventional diff. I have in front of me a large patch where I've made very few changes, but a text diff lists 9 pages of modifications.
What's needed is something that can parse enough of the JSON format to recognize it as a list of "objects" with id numbers and then compare the properties of identical ids, regardless of the order they occur in either file.
Ideally it would be able to differentiate between deletions/insertions ("major" changes) and things like moving an object (more minor, but of course with the potential for effecting left-to-right operation) and cosmetic issues (color). And so on.
Anyone old enough to remember "resource forks" and ResDiff will recognize what I'm looking for.
Sometimes minor changes to a patch can have catastrophic effects on how it works, and a tool like this would help in tracking down this kind of problem.