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Re: A more modest proposal (Was: Emacs learning curve)

From: Alfred M. Szmidt
Subject: Re: A more modest proposal (Was: Emacs learning curve)
Date: Fri, 23 Jul 2010 03:28:38 -0400

   1) cua-selection-mode, or its moral equivalent

   cua-selection-mode doesn't play games C-c and C-x or interfere with
   any normal Emacs keybinding, but it does give users bindings for
   control-insert, shift-insert, and shift-delete.

   These keystrokes perform "copy", "paste", and "cut", respectively,
   and the same keystrokes do similar things in other CUA applications
   --- it's be easy to tell users, "unlike most programs, Emacs does
   not use C-c, C-x, and C-v for copy and paste: Emacs was old when
   these bindings were new, and they're used for something very
   different in Emacs. But Emacs *does* support using Control-Insert,
   Shift-Delete, and Shift-Insert for copy, cut, and paste. So do most
   other programs; learn to use these keys instead."

I think this is a good idea; if it doesn't interfere with other

   3) Natural binding for C-z

   Bind C-z by default to this function:

   (defun undo-or-suspend-emacs ()
     "Undo if we're in a windowing system, or suspend emacs if we're in a TTY"
     (setq this-command (if window-system 'undo 'suspend-emacs))
     (call-interactively this-command))

   Adopting this binding will ensure Emacs has the most natural and
   common behavior on C-z for a given environment. Besides, not much
   of value is lost: why bother with C-z in a windowing system when
   the system probably provides its own idiomatic way of minimizing a

Having the same keybinding behave completely differently depending if
you use a windowing system or the console is a bad idea.  What about
having C-z C-z do suspend-frame, and C-z z ... do undo?  Not that I
see a need for yet another undo keybinding.

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