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Re: Recent change to describe-variable

From: Ted Zlatanov
Subject: Re: Recent change to describe-variable
Date: Mon, 04 Apr 2011 08:34:03 -0500
User-agent: Gnus/5.110016 (No Gnus v0.16) Emacs/24.0.50 (gnu/linux)

On Mon, 4 Apr 2011 06:03:09 -0700 "Drew Adams" <address@hidden> wrote: 

>> > So if `C-h v' AKA `describe-variable' is going to describe 
>> > everything, it should at least filter out self-quoting :symbols
>> At your request I installed a change to exclude :keywords

DA> Oh, are we now installing things at the request of one Emacs
DA> user/developer?  Someone has an idea s?he thinks is good, so it's
DA> installed as part of Emacs?

Yes, I believe that's exactly how it works.  I don't know why you're
acting surprised.

>> but the lexbind-new merge overrode it. So if the current
>> predicate is removed it would be good to filter out keywords
>> again (though it makes sense to let pass keywords with a
>> docstring, which my original patch didn't).

DA> Keywords with a doc string and without.  I agree with the post below by 
DA> to the cited thread: if it has a doc string, include it.  And even if it 
DA> have a doc string, include it ("No documentation" is useful information.)

I was specifically talking about self-quoting symbols.  Putting them in
`describe-variable' is like putting personal names like "John" and
"Nick" in the dictionary.  Besides being incorrect, there are proper
nouns and verbs like "john" and "nick."

j> (defconst :mykeyword :mykeyword)
j> and even if you add a docstring to that, I'm not sure it is sensible
j> to show it as a completion of describe-variable...
s> Actually, if it has a docstring, it definitely makes sense.  And if it
s> doesn't, then it's not that much of a problem to include those rare
s> cases in the completion.

DA> Let _users_ filter things as they like.  And if some user wants a
DA> specialized "`my-describe-emacs-variable' or
DA> `my-describe-documented-variable' then s?he can define the command
DA> and post it to the wiki.  It's not rare (or difficult) for a user to
DA> define a specialized `describe-*' command.

But that's ridiculous, shifting the burden to the user.  `C-h v' is a
first-class command; it's very visible and very important.  It should
not offer garbage.  How could it possibly benefit the user to offer
undocumented self-quoting symbols for completion to `describe-variable'?


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