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Re: font-lock-maximum-decoration should be 2 by default?

From: Vitalie Spinu
Subject: Re: font-lock-maximum-decoration should be 2 by default?
Date: Sun, 19 Aug 2012 13:47:12 +0200
User-agent: Gnus/5.130004 (Ma Gnus v0.4) Emacs/24.1.50 (gnu/linux)

  >> "Stephen J. Turnbull" <address@hidden>
  >> on Sun, 19 Aug 2012 20:10:21 +0900 wrote:

  > Vitalie Spinu writes:
  >> It's easy to get sick of too much customization. It's another well know
  >> paradox of human pshychology -- we want more choose but too much choice
  >> is bad for you

  > And the experiments you cite were conducted on a sample of Emacs
  > users?  Surely not!  The point is that Emacs users *are* different
  > (this is nearly a tautology), 

 The full spectrum of Emacs users is broader than you seem to
 think. It's not only hardcore programmers, like you are. I met a guy
 who was using Emacs only for org-mode to organize himself! I also won't
 be surprised that the majority of Emacs users don't actually know
 enough elisp to be able to write useful scripts. As one of the
 developers of ESS, I see users which have no clue of how to customize
 even basic things in Emacs. They are still able to happily use
 ESS/Emacs, but they all rely on defaults. And this is why defaults are
 so important. So knowing elisp, or even the ability to customize things
 is not a prerequisite for an Emacs user at all.

  >> >> 3) Developers which would like to capture 30% of salad lovers will try
  >> >> to find workarounds. That is, add redundant, mode-specific
  >> >> font-lock customization, or mess with
  >> >> font-lock-maximum-decoration.
  >> > This is true, but I'm not sure if it's a problem.
  >> It's a problem in light of yours (2). Everyone wants a consistent
  >> interface.

  > But who decides what "consistent" means?  The highlighting appropriate
  > for C is surely different from that for Lisp or Perl or Haskell.  Some
  > will be common, I suppose, such as for literal strings.  But what
  > about Perl "barewords"?  What does consistency mean for something that
  > doesn't exist in most languages?  Should shell commands be highlighted
  > differently depending on whether they're builtins, system commands, or
  > shell functions and aliases?

Consistent in customization interface, not in that fontification is set
by default. If there is variable font-lock-maximum-decoration that
should be it. No X-mode-maximum-font-lock, foo-mode-best-font-lock or
boo-mode-try-this-font-lock-level etc.

  > That kind of thing has to be decided by the mode developers, although
  > the Emacs maintainers often will offer suggestions, and for modes in
  > core Emacs will add/adjust to their own taste.  And in the end the
  > dirge "Why do the defaults always suck?" applies anyway.


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