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Re: Emacs completion matches selection UI

From: Stephen J. Turnbull
Subject: Re: Emacs completion matches selection UI
Date: Thu, 19 Dec 2013 02:37:36 +0900

Ted Zlatanov writes:

 > I am trying to explain that people like what's familiar to them and
 > call it "intuitive" and "easy to use."

As far as I can tell, that's unecessary.  It's a pretty generally
accepted principle, and nobody has denied it.

 > The best way forward seems to be to look at specific solutions of
 > the problem outside Emacs,

"Solution" to what "problem"?  I don't understand what problem you're
trying to solve by emulating other application's UIs.

For example, it's easy to understand why Richard wants WYSIWYG.  I
have a good imagination, I find that restructured text looks a lot
like typeset printing (especially if I tilt my head to get italics).
But the attraction is that unlike TeX, which looks like code, ReST
looks like the target output (IMO which is the only one that matters
when I'm writing).  If Richard wants it to look more like the target
output, I can understand that even though I don't need it.  Thus
WYSIWYG is something that Emacs users want, in this case existing
Emacs users.

I don't understand what story you're trying to tell to show that the
completion style you're advocating will benefit Emacs users, either
existing ones or ones who plausibly might be encouraged to use Emacs
by the new style.

 > Please also understand I am not talking about actual functionality
 > here, only about the user experience.  Emacs is by far more
 > powerful and useful than most products on the market, but without a
 > good user experience it's harder to discover that.

My claim is that the kind of user who needs a "good user experience"
to get started won't discover Emacs's power anyway, because of the
discontinuity.  Which you are ignoring ....

 > preferably without mentioning Apple or Microsoft products because
 > they tend to polarize the debate quickly.

How can you avoid mentioning the two most "familiar" UIs in the
business (backed up by a pile of HCI research)?

 > * they should be displayed without a dedicated *Completions* buffer,
 >   like `widget-choose' does it (special text buffer in text mode, nice
 >   popup in graphical mode)

Huh?  *Completions* is a special text buffer, no?

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