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bug#24549: 25.1; Customizing group `text'

From: Drew Adams
Subject: bug#24549: 25.1; Customizing group `text'
Date: Tue, 27 Sep 2016 07:49:09 -0700 (PDT)

> The group's _symbol_ is 'wp', "Text" is only its label (a.k.a. :tag):
>   (defgroup wp nil
>     "Support for editing text files."
>     :tag "Text"
>     :group 'emacs)

Ah yes.  I should have checked that.

IMHO, this is a gotcha.  Emacs itself, especially, should not do
this by default.

If there is no good way to create an alias for group `text' here,
then perhaps we should at least create another group `text',
which inherits from this.  The problem (gotcha) should be taken
care of in some way.

> The ELisp manual says:
>   ‘:tag LABEL’
>        Use LABEL, a string, instead of the item’s name, to label the item
>        in customization menus and buffers.  *Don’t use a tag which is
>                                             ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
>        substantially different from the item’s real name; that would cause
>        ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
>        confusion.*
>        ^^^^^^^^^^^
> (a.k.a. "do as I say, not as I do").

> Unfortunately, this is a very old problem, and the 'wp' thingy is by
> now probably spread too much, including outside of Emacs, for us to
> even consider renaming the symbol itself.

See above.  I don't think there is a way to alias it (and then
deprecate `wp'.  But at least we can make a group `text' that

> So I think one band-aid solution could be:
>   . mention the group's symbol in its doc string, so that it could be
>     seen in the Custom buffer;

Yes, but a user using `M-x customize' and then trying to drill
down, will not necessarily take time to read that doc.

>   . extend customize-read-group so it also accepts group tags, not
>     just their symbols.

That's not a bad idea.  But in that case, we would essentially
get near-duplicate names for those groups that actually followed
the instructions and used a similar (but not identical) name for
the tag label.  IOW, a tag that is more explicit (e.g. longer)
or is an abbreviation of the group name (i.e., shorter) would
be present for completion, along with the group name itself.

That's not a big problem, IMO.  This could indeed be a solution.

> Any better ideas?

See above.  We can create another group, `text', which inherits
from `wp'.  Emacs itself could move toward using group `text'
everywhere.  The doc for group `text' could say that `wp' is
deprecated (even though there is no code-enforcement via
warning etc.).

IOW, we can (1) make a group `text' that behaves essentially
like `wp' and (2) let users know that `wp' is considered

Yes, this would mean that both `text' and `wp' would appear
for completion.  But unlike your proposed solution, this
would be a one-off bug fix, and not a generalization that
applies to every use of a tag.

A priori - i.e., until I hear more pros & cons, I think this
would be a better solution that what you suggested.  What do
you think?

One way or another, we need, I think, to make `text' work.

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