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Re: display-buffer-alist simplifications

From: martin rudalics
Subject: Re: display-buffer-alist simplifications
Date: Wed, 03 Aug 2011 18:22:30 +0200
User-agent: Thunderbird (Windows/20090302)

> 1. `special-display-buffer-names' is _very_, very old.  It has been in GNU 
> as far back as the introduction of frames, I believe.  Someone can check the
> origin and the original design arguments; I'm no expert on this.
> 2. AFAIK, from the outset it has been just as "complex" as it is today - all 
> the possibilities have been there since Day One.  They were not added
> incrementally because someone thought that it would be neat to add a bell here
> or a whistle there.  They were thought to be important by the _original
> designers_, many, many moon ago.

Back in the nineties the doc-string of `special-display-buffer-names' read as

      "*List of buffer names that should have their own special frames.\n\
  Displaying a buffer whose name is in this list makes a special frame for it\n\
  using `special-display-function'.\n\
  Instead of a buffer name, the list entries can be cons cells.  In that\n\
  case the car should be a buffer name, and the cdr data to be passed as a
  second argument to `special-display-function'.\n\
  See also `special-display-regexps'.");

The additional features inlcuding the `same-window'/`same-frame' stuff
and the buffer specific function specification part must have been
included somewhere around 2003 (I didn't find a useful ChangeLog entry).
These changes introduced the bells and whistles I meant and do not

> 4. Here is the _only_ use I make of it - Drew's weirdo use case.  I use only 
> form (BUFFER FUNCTION OTHER-ARGS...), and only for two buffers: *Help* and
> *Completions*.  This is my value of `special-display-buffer-names':
> (("*Completions*" 1on1-display-*Completions*-frame
>   ((background-color . "LavenderBlush2")
>    (mouse-color . "VioletRed")
>    (cursor-color . "VioletRed")
>    (menu-bar-lines . 0)
>    (tool-bar-lines . 0)
>    (width . 100)))
>  ("*Help*" 1on1-display-*Help*-frame
>   ((background-color . "Thistle")
>    (mouse-color . "Blue Violet")
>    (cursor-color . "Blue Violet")
>    (height . 40))))

This means that you specifiy the function explicitly, using the

  Finally, an element of this list can be also specified as

bells and whistles which were not present in the original design.


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