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Re: Emacs learning curve

From: Stephen J. Turnbull
Subject: Re: Emacs learning curve
Date: Fri, 16 Jul 2010 13:35:53 +0900

Eli Zaretskii writes:

 > Let me give you an example.  The keybinding I tend to use most in
 > Emacs is M-/.  Do we have anything similar in other applications?

AFAIK, "no and yes".  No, I can't recall another application which has
this functionality on a key.  But many applications (including Firefox
and Open Office, where it drives me to distraction) will provide
dynamic autocompletion (as you yourself mentioned) with a popup menu
which you can access with TAB (in Open Office and MS Office IIRC) or
DOWN (Firefox in general, and the Google search widget, which does a
substantially better job IMO).  It is not obvious to me that providing
that feature in addition to M-/ style completion would be a bad idea.

 > From personal experience, it is not a disaster to use two different
 > sets of keybindings.  Yes, sometimes you will err and curse.  But it
 > won't let you abandon a tool that is otherwise useful.  Making Emacs
 > extremely useful is therefore the single most important way of making
 > it more popular among those who it targets.

I have to agree with that, however.  Autocompletion is at best a nice
feature for many newbies.  It won't help attract the kind of new-user-
cum-future-developer that Emacs needs.

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