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bug#20322: 25.0.50; indent-tabs-mode should default to nil

From: Dmitry Gutov
Subject: bug#20322: 25.0.50; indent-tabs-mode should default to nil
Date: Fri, 17 Apr 2015 18:55:48 +0300
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux x86_64; rv:36.0) Gecko/20100101 Thunderbird/36.0

On 04/17/2015 05:36 PM, Eli Zaretskii wrote:

This argument goes both ways, you know.

You're welcome to use it against myself when an opportunity rises. I don't believe it's the case here.

And no, it's not only my experience, as I mentioned more than once in
this thread.

Sure, but one's circle of acquaintances is not the best metric.

Are _you_ open to leaving C and C++ at their current defaults?  What
would it take to convince you doing that?

A decent statistical analysis of the current active C and C++ projects would do it, if it favors tabs (or at least doesn't favor spaces too heavily), as well as an obvious-enough way for the users to change the indent-tabs-mode value in those modes.

I gave you mine.  I've seen, and still see, a lot of C/C++ code
written by others, and they all mix spaces and tabs.

While GitHub is not an ideal sample, it's certainly bigger than your sample, don't you agree? And a lot of corporations have been migrating their libre software projects to GitHub in the recent years.

True.  But changing long-lived defaults always annoys people; you can
see evidence to that on help-gnu-emacs almost every day.  So we
shouldn't change them without a very good reason.  And I don't see one
in this case.

Considering the size of the Emacs user base, one might say the evidence on help-gnu-emacs is pretty underwhelming (or else we'd be drowning in it).

I think you underestimate the widespread use of Google and questions
asked on stack-overflow and such likes.  People simply collect
snippets from there and paste them into their .emacs.  Problem solved.

Yeah, I guess they do. But that's definitely not ideal.

But there's nothing wrong with this particular default.  It doesn't
reduce any functionality.  Users that aren't annoyed enough will learn
to live with it; those with higher motivation will discover how to
change that soon enough.  There's no real problem here.  Unlike other
arguments we had about changing defaults (font-lock, colors, and menus
come to mind), this one does not affect any functionality at all.

The indentation style is one of the obvious bikeshedding topics. I suspect a significant fraction of Emacs users try to make it just right in their config from the start.

If you think that that value is not a problem, you shouldn't object to changing it to appease the majority either.

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