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Re: [CVS] f7, f8 bound..

From: Miles Bader
Subject: Re: [CVS] f7, f8 bound..
Date: Fri, 30 Aug 2002 19:55:28 -0400
User-agent: Mutt/1.3.28i

On Fri, Aug 30, 2002 at 04:48:41PM +0200, Kim F. Storm wrote:
> IMO, we better use the function keys for things which makes using
> emacs easier.
> As an example, M$-Word (which I would image quite a few users are
> using -- like it or not) has the following bindings
> Seems completely arbitraty to me...

Right -- I think the same can be said for almost _any_ binding, except
absurdly standardized ones like F1 (though even that's really useful for PC

Personally I think it's silly to even think about having standardized
bindings for function keys; we should just leave them all for user-use
(except F1 and F10 I suppose, because they're apparently _very_ standard, and
for backward-compatibilty reasons).

Certainly, for operations you perform _very_ often, it can be convenient to
have them on a function key -- but exactly which operations those are is very
subjective.  For any operation that you only perform _somewhat_ often, on the
other hand, function keys are a positively _bad_ user interface:  they're
hard to touch-type and more importantly, they're very hard to remember.

A _much_ better idea, I think, would be to make it very simple for even
novice users to easily _bind_ the function keys to their liking; I'm not
saying it's all that hard now, but I mean, make it really, really, easy.

For instance, a mode that shows a graphical representation of the function
keys and their current bindings, and allows the user to trivially change them.
Perhaps by moving the cursor to a function key picture, and hitting SPC/RET
which would make it prompt for a another key-binding, and then copy that to
the function key; while in this special mode, it might even locally rebind
all the function keys so that you could just hit e.g. `F5 C-x C-f' to bind F5
to find-file.

What do you think about this?

P.S.  All information contained in the above letter is false,
      for reasons of military security.

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