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Re: eval-after-load not harmful after all (Was: Re: Why js-2mode?)

From: Daniel Colascione
Subject: Re: eval-after-load not harmful after all (Was: Re: Why js-2mode?)
Date: Mon, 10 Aug 2009 23:06:41 -0400

On Aug 10, 2009, at 8:43 PM, Stephen J. Turnbull wrote:

Drew Adams writes:
In Icicles, I sometimes `require' other libraries explicitly. But in a few cases I use `eval-after-load' instead - for exactly the kind of thing that Carsten

I agree with Daniel, Carsten, and others that `eval-after-load' should not be

I have no objection to use of `eval-after-load' in user or site files
that are disabled by emacs -q.  But `eval-after-load' in core files is
like smoking in an elevator next to a pregnant woman.  It's very
convenient, maybe even "necessary", from the point of view of the
user of the feature, but he doesn't bear the pain of debugging a
Heisenbug that appears for the user of random-package-using-e-a-l.

You haven't actually addressed the reason for using e-a-l and provided alternatives, nor have you provided any concrete examples of the harm e-a-l might cause. You've just put "necessary" in scare quotes without even considering the idea that it might actually *be* necessary.

If packages M needs to work with optional package Q, then there are two approaches: either M can use eval-after-load to customize Q, or Q can include a list of every possible M with which it can be used. You might decry the former, but I don't think the latter is any more maintainable.

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