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RE: should `minibuffer-complete' use `abbreviate-file-name'?

From: Drew Adams
Subject: RE: should `minibuffer-complete' use `abbreviate-file-name'?
Date: Mon, 15 Oct 2007 09:25:01 -0700

>     His usage:
>      FROM: Any easy-to-type and mnemonic regexp that matches
>          a syntactically valid directory name, whether or not
>          such a directory exists. Example: "^/proj1".
>      TO:   An (absolute) name of an existing directory.
>          Example: "/a/very/long/dir/name/to/my/project".
> That is definitely not what this feature is meant for.
> It isn't meant for expanding abbreviations.
> It is meant for replacing long names with equivalent short ones.

It is nevertheless what this feature *does*. It is agnostic wrt name length.

> If he wants a short way to enter /a/very/long/dir/name/to/my/project,
> he should make ~/proj1 a symlink to it.  Then he can use the
> abbreviation ~/proj1 in EVERY program.

For various reasons, he might not WANT such symlinks. He can also create
environment variables, as Stefan suggested, but he might not WANT such env
vars. He might not WANT such abbreviation/substitution/rewriting (call it
what you like) in EVERY program.

Anyway, I understand that you are not in favor of either (1) letting TAB
completion respect `directory-abbrev-alist' or (2) documenting the existing
behavior of `directory-abbrev-alist' (beyond what is the originally intended
symlink use).

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