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Re: The minibuffer vs. Dialog Boxes (Re: Making XEmacs be more up-to-dat

From: Michael Toomim
Subject: Re: The minibuffer vs. Dialog Boxes (Re: Making XEmacs be more up-to-date)
Date: Sat, 20 Apr 2002 12:17:13 -0700
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; U; Linux i686; en-US; rv:0.9.9) Gecko/20020412 Debian/0.9.9-6

Eli Zaretskii wrote:
From: Terje Bless <address@hidden>
Date: Sat, 20 Apr 2002 13:03:10 +0200

And speaking of which, the thing that confused me most over the years was
the terminology. A "buffer" is a "document" and a "frame" is a "window"?
Why do I have to choose "New Frame" when what I /really/ want is a new
window? And I don't work with "buffers"; I work with "files" or
"documents". "Buffers" are something hardware /has/ or that I implement in
code, it's not something I work with day-to-day.

There's a Glossary in the manual to ease the culture shock.  I think
we should advertise the glossary more, and perhaps make it more
accessible by providing special links to it from doc strings etc.

I don't think it's reasonable to expect Emacs to change its
terminology because most of it predates the one you are accustomed to.
For example, Emacs was talking about windows when glass teletype
displays were the only ones in existence.

As for buffers, I disagree that it's unused in the context used by
Emacs.  I've seen several editors that do the same.

I agree with Terje on this. If XEmacs is to be designed to be more easily usable by newbies, the terminology should change along with the interface.

I don't understand your point that "the term window used to mean something else"... I mean, if we're going to ignore the new terminology, why don't we just call programs 'punch cards', because that's what they used to be?

Changing the terminology would help new users, and I think that old users would be able to get used to the changes pretty quickly, since they'd all be pretty intuitive (assuming they're just being updated to the terms commonly used today).

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