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Graphical Kill node in Emacs manual

From: Drew Adams
Subject: Graphical Kill node in Emacs manual
Date: Fri, 18 Aug 2006 09:48:06 -0700

Perhaps this Emacs-manual node should be split, or its contents moved
elsewhere (since it is small, and it would be smaller still, if split).

Currently, these two very different topics are presented in this node:

1. Relation between inter-application clipboard and Emacs kill ring. Yanking
between applications.

2. Delete Selection mode.

I think #1 deserves more explanation, if I understand it correctly.

The clipboard isn't even mentioned here. I think the clipboard is important
to understanding yank interaction with other apps (I don't claim to
understand that well, so I might be wrong here). If this does not need more
explanation, then perhaps this paragraph could simply be merged with its
parent node. If this is related to the clipboard, as I suspect, then perhaps
it could be merged with node Clipboard somehow.

Also, node Clipboard is in the Frames section of the manual (presumably
because of its relation to X Window), not the Killing section, and there is
no cross reference between the two. Surely, the clipboard is related somehow
to the kill ring, at least conceptually?

#2 should be separated from #1, IMO. People will not find #2 by trying to go
to node `Graphical Kill', and #2 has only a limited relation to #1 - it
seems added here only as an afterthought.

How about creating a node that describes PC Selection mode and Delete
Selection mode, and relates them to Transient Mark mode? IIUC, PC Selection
mode uses Delete Selection mode (more or less), which uses Transient Mark
mode. Users often ask about this sort of thing, and the answer usually
informs them about all three levels, so they can decide what they want:

a. Transient Mark mode to highlight the active region.

b. Delete Selection mode to do (a) plus type-to-replace behavior.

c. PC Selection mode to do (b) plus provide PC key bindings.

[BTW - To me, (b) is a great way to use Emacs, and I would never consider
using (c), PC bindings. I don't think of Delete Selection mode as emulating
another editor; I think of it as the right way to use Emacs ;-). Too often,
I think, D-S mode gets relegated to the margin of "emulation" modes, along
with vi stuff and MS Windows stuff. I suspect more users would use it if
they knew what it was. Personally, I think it should be the Emacs default

Also, in any explanation of Delete Selection mode, we should mention that
this involves killing, not deleting, in spite of the name. That is, you can
yank back the "deleted" text. This is not obvious, IMO. A better name for
this feature would be "Type-to-Replace" mode or "Overwrite-Region" mode, but
it's too late for that now.

Perhaps someone more knowledgeable than I can make better suggestions here,
but I think something should be done to better present the relations

* the kill ring and the clipboard
* Delete Selection mode, PC Selection mode, and Transient Mark mode

If no change is made to this node, we should at least find a better name for
it than Graphical Kill. You can't even use `i' to find this node by looking
up `kill' or `clipboard' or `overwrite' (which is essentially what
type-to-replace is: overwriting the region). How someone would use `i' to
find this information on Delete Selection mode is beyond me, unless s?he
knew that it was called `delete-selection-mode'.

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