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Re: `C-b' is backward-char, `left' is left-char - why?

From: Stefan Monnier
Subject: Re: `C-b' is backward-char, `left' is left-char - why?
Date: Fri, 27 May 2011 21:48:34 -0300
User-agent: Gnus/5.13 (Gnus v5.13) Emacs/24.0.50 (gnu/linux)

> Why not make bidi optional?  Why not have a minor mode for the bidi
> stuff, and only bind keys such as `left' to commands that are specific
> to bidi when that mode is turned on?  Why make such an invasive,
> top-level change to Emacs?

You mean that the `left' binding to `left-char' should be placed in
a minor mode keymap activated by the variable bidi-display-reordering?
[ I'll assume that's what you mean, if not, please tell us how you'd
  like to get the behavior you describe. ]

I can see why you'd want that, but there are some serious problems with it:

- minor mode bindings have higher precedence than major mode bindings, so
  suddenly major mode bindings of `left' would become ineffective.

- bidi-display-reordering is intended to default to t, so any problem
  that the above would avoid when bidi-display-reordering is nil would
  only affect a minority of users, while the majority would still be
  affected by those problems.


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