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Re: Selection changes in revno 100822

From: Jan Djärv
Subject: Re: Selection changes in revno 100822
Date: Sat, 14 Aug 2010 11:46:53 +0200
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Macintosh; U; Intel Mac OS X 10.6; sv-SE; rv: Gecko/20100802 Thunderbird/3.1.2

Eli Zaretskii skrev 2010-08-14 10.00:

I'm utterly confused now.  The doc string of x-select-enable-primary

   Non-nil means cutting and pasting uses the primary selection.

According to this, the value of nil, the current default, means
"cutting and pasting do NOT use the primary selection", right?

But OTOH, the NEWS entry says something contradictory:

   The way Emacs interacts with the clipboard and primary selection, by
   default, is now similar to other X applications.  In particular, kill
   and yank use the clipboard, in addition to the primary selection.

The last sentence seems to say that kill and yank still do use the
primary selection, and _in_addition_ also use the clipboard.  If
that's the intent of this text, then it seems to be in contradiction
with the new default of x-select-enable-primary.

The name is bad. The way other X apps doit is that selected text (i.e. just selected, not cut/copied) goes to PRIMARY.
Then when you cut/copy, it goes to CLIPBOARD also.

So the name x-select-enable-primary is really x-cut/copy-into-primary AFAIK.

One other issue we should consider IMO is what is the semantics of
mouse-2 in sessions that support the mouse, but cannot access
selections.  One such example is a TTY with a GPM mouse.  I don't have
access to such a build of Emacs, but I'm quite sure mouse-2 there will
either do nothing or signal an error.  That's hardly a good thing,
because previously it would yank from the kill ring.

Maybe Emacs should use some internal notion of PRIMARY on those platforms
where it don't exist.  That way select and mouse-2 selects and insterts text
as on X.  But without touching the kill ring.

Thanks in advance for helping me become less confused.

It is very confusing. There are special cases depending on how the selection was made, and then badly named variables increase the confusion. Not to mention trying to handle multiple platforms with differing capabilities.

        Jan D.

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