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Re: Default of jit-lock-stealth-time

From: David Kastrup
Subject: Re: Default of jit-lock-stealth-time
Date: Tue, 27 Feb 2007 23:02:49 +0100
User-agent: Gnus/5.11 (Gnus v5.11) Emacs/22.0.94 (gnu/linux)

Eli Zaretskii <address@hidden> writes:

>> Cc: address@hidden
>> From: David Kastrup <address@hidden>
>> Date: Tue, 27 Feb 2007 21:59:12 +0100
>> > Inaccurate.  First, font-lock was turned off by default in _all_
>> > versions of Emacs since its introduction (in v19.x, AFAIR).  More
>> > importantly, a large majority of users turned it on,
>> I'd like to see some statistics supporting that.  A large majority
>> of users does not touch defaults, according to my experience.
> One evidence I can offer is the number of discussions between
> developers where different people tried many times to convince
> Richard to turn font-lock on by default.

Where would have been the point in having it turned on by default if
"a large majority of users" would turn it on manually, anyway?

I see this rather as evidence that people did _not_ turn it on by
default, and that Emacs' popularity suffered because of that.

So I come to quite opposite conclusions given the same, indirect data.
And I don't consider my conclusions at all contrived.  Which would
warrant more direct data before one comes to the conclusion that it is
ok to inflict users with the bad results of stealth fontification.

Personally, I find it a _large_ warning sign that a number of
developers said they turned stealth fontification off because of bad
effects, and not a _single_ one reported turning it back on again
because of opposing bad effects.

So we have _several_ reports of stealth fontification being deemed
unacceptable to experienced Emacs users, and not a single report of
having it turned off being deemed unacceptable.

In addition, it is really _hard_ to find the culprit for the bad
effects of stealth fontification.  I have not been able to figure this
out myself.  And even though it is hard, several other developers
_independently_ figured it out and disabled it.

I think that calls for _very_ good evidence for large negative effects
if it is turned off by default, and I have up to now (including this
mail I reply to) failed to see anything I would consider to be even
remotely close.

David Kastrup, Kriemhildstr. 15, 44793 Bochum

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