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Re: dired should clear marks after most operations, or something

From: Michael John Downes
Subject: Re: dired should clear marks after most operations, or something
Date: 12 Apr 2001 15:40:58 -0400

Eli Zaretskii <address@hidden> writes:

> Then how come the user didn't pay attention to the long list of files
> he was about to "rm -rf"?

Cause he (me that is) wasn't watching closely enough, and it was only a
small window (approx 3 lines high) at the bottom of my main window that
showed the list of marked files, whereas I was touch-typing and looking
some 30 or 40 lines higher up, and I wasn't expecting to see a list in
the first place because I had forgotten that the marks were still there
from the previous dired command ... but yes---it was indeed a really
stupid mistake.

My point is not that it wasn't a stupid mistake, just that I suspect
that my level of stupidity and carelessness is fairly representative of
Emacs users in general. And that this is not the first time something
like this happened to me, but only the latest of many times and it
finally seemed to me that the current dired approach makes it too
confusing for users to remember whether the next operation will operate
on the file under the cursor, or on a group of marked files.

If other users corroborate that they have had trouble in this respect,
then the Emacs maintainers might want to consider making some sort of
change. If not, let the status quo remain as it is. I can always program
some wrappers for my own use that will help me keep from shooting myself
in the foot so often :-)

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