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Re: easy mode-line manipulation

From: Richard Stallman
Subject: Re: easy mode-line manipulation
Date: Sun, 28 Oct 2001 07:07:18 -0700 (MST)

Regarding your suggestion:

    > Currently you can do that by "direct" manipulation of the default
    > format, but that is cumbersome and error-prone. There's no easy way to
    > reuse the existing properties, among other things. The value of
    > mode-line-format is complex and unstructured.
    > What I envision is splitting up the mode-line value in logical sections
    > and elements (via attributes would be easy, I think), and defining
    > functions to manipulate those sections and the elements inside them,
    > so for example:
    > (setq my-mode-line
    >       (mode-line-modify (copy-mode-line 'standard)
    >                         :section 'position-info
    >                         :help 'default
    >                         "%l/%c"))

Some parts of the mode line are already kept in separate
variables--for instance, mode-line-buffer-identification.
If we made similar variables for the other portions of the
mode line, would that do the job?  That would be much simpler
because it would not require any change in the basic features.
You could do it yourself by setting mode-line-format,
but if people find it useful we might want to do this
in the default setup as well.

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