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Re: Improving X selection?

From: Tom Horsley
Subject: Re: Improving X selection?
Date: Thu, 7 Feb 2008 16:01:24 -0500

On Thu, 07 Feb 2008 14:45:46 -0500
Stefan Monnier <address@hidden> wrote:

> For all three cases, the first question is "where does the text come from":
> No 3 should always use the CLIPBOARD then PRIMARY then kill ring.
> No 2 should use the CLIPBOARD only if x-select-enable-clipboard is set.
> No 1 is identical except it may also not check PRIMARY either.

This is, of course, totally a matter of opinion, and is the reason
the complication exists for those of us who have other opinions.
For instance, I talk to a lot of systems which only have xterm as
the interface. Xterm only does PRIMARY. If you examine the algorithm
you just described, it is almost impossible to obtain PRIMARY if
a CLIPBOARD exists anywhere else. The fact that emacs works that
way was the primary motivation for my original message all
those months ago.

There is also another deeper philosophical issue: the question of
the value of two different selections which are visually identical.
I happen to think the invention of CLIPBOARD was perhaps the single
most brain damaged idea ever foisted upon users by the singularly
brain damaged group of folks who call themselves freedesktop, that's
my opinion, which I guess is a minority one, but why shouldn't
I be able to configure my emacs to make the difference almost
indistinguishable? That's what emacs is about. By all means make
the default conform to whatever standard you want to pick, but
don't make it impossibly difficult for people with different
ideas to work a different way :-).

My way is: emacs sets both CLIPBOARD and PRIMARY however I make
the selection (so I don't have to mentally keep track of which
selection has the pea under it :-), and paste operations of any
kind put all the different selections into the kill ring, so
if I see the wrong text got pasted, a yank-pop will get me the
right text.

With the price of an occasional yank-pop, I can almost eradicate
the difference bwtween PRIMARY and CLIPBOARD.

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