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RE: facemenu-unlisted-faces

From: Drew Adams
Subject: RE: facemenu-unlisted-faces
Date: Sun, 2 Jul 2006 16:50:39 -0700

        I think, however, that
        the Face submenu is pretty useless, whether short or long.
        I'd suggest removing it altogether, after the release.

    This is a step towards WYSIWYG editing.  We are going to move forward,
    not backward, so please stop suggesting backward steps.

I won't argue with you, except to point out that "please stop" implies that
I am continually suggesting steps that you regard as backward. I don't think
that's the case, even from your (backward? forward?) point of view.

Regardless of what your view might be of the direction I'm facing, the
suggestions I've made have in fact generally been in the direction of
WYSIWYG and direct manipulation. My own libraries emphasize this, in
particular regarding faces and colors.

If you want to have simple faces in the Faces menu, then limit the choices
to Bold, Italic, and Underline, as well as perhaps a few simple color
swatches for quickly changing foreground color (forget about dired-this and
*-that). That's what most WYSIWYG menus provide. The number of such "faces"
is usually less than 20, and the menu item for a color is a swatch, not its
name ("Red") - the "menu" appears more as a rudimentary palette than a list
of names. A simple, quick menu for bold, italic, underline, and a few simple
foreground colors would be useful.

Most WYSIWYG UIs also make bold, italic, and underline available as tool-bar

Most WYSIWYG UIs also provide some (perhaps not quite so quick) way to apply
an arbitrary color to text. That's what an active list-faces-display could
help do (see next), as could also a more sophisticated color editor.

        So, clicking the face name in `list-faces-display' could
        simply apply that face to the region (what Faces > ...
        does today). And clicking the face's alphabet would show
        the *Faces* description of the face, with a link to
        Customize it.

    That could be a good idea, but remember there are lots of faces
    in the buffer made by `list-faces-display', so this would not be
    a convenient way to select and apply one for editing purposes.

No, it might not be a substitute for a quick way to make text bold, italic,
or underlined. It would serve a different purpose: let you choose and apply
*any* face. Menu item Display Faces should then be rebaptised to some other
name that suggests that you can use it to apply a face.

Actually, even though it lets you do more, accessing an arbitrary face this
way would not necessarily be longer than picking its name out of menu Faces.
The Display Faces menu item is one click. Finding a face in the displayed
list can take a moment, admittedly, but at least you can look for it by
appearance and not just by name as in menu Faces. Picking the face is a
second click. Two clicks total - the same as picking a face name in submenu
Faces. And you have direct access by appearance, vs reading names. I won't
argue that it's always as quick, but it might often be about as quick.

After a user has used list-faces-display to apply a face to text, that face
(and its appearance) could be added to the Faces menu for subsequent quicker
access in that session (assuming that it is in fact quicker). It would then
be on a par with Bold, though farther down the menu.

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