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Emacs terminology (not again!?) [was: Apologia for bzr]

From: Drew Adams
Subject: Emacs terminology (not again!?) [was: Apologia for bzr]
Date: Mon, 6 Jan 2014 23:30:27 -0800 (PST)

> > This said, the "what you call a window is called a frame"
> > is not nearly as problematic as "what we call window is
> > not what you think", so maybe renaming "window" to "pane"
> > would get us most of the benefit.
> I think you're right there.  If we just get rid of the word
> "window", I think that'll fix most confusions.  

What confusion?  Is there really a problem?  Are you sure?

I've been dealing with newbie Emacs questions and confusion
for as long as most of you, and I don't think I have ever
encountered a user who had difficulting understanding what
we mean, once the terms are presented.

IOW, any contact at all with either the Emacs docs or a quick
Q & A has always answered any user questions I've come across
in this regard.  I have never, ever, encountered any
"confusion" here.  There is sometimes confusion elsewhere
(menu structure, keymaps, font-lock-keywords...), but no
confusion about windows and frames, once the terms are
explained.  No confusion, just initial ignorance, which is
not the same thing and which is easily remedied.

Seriously, have any of you encounted a user who could not
understand what an Emacs window and frame are?  Ever?

It's a faux probleme.  It says more about you who see it as
a problem than it does about any potential Emacs newbies.

And you ain't gonna get no mileage out of making a big
attempt to clothe Emacs in terminology the Emacs-ignorant
will immediately recognize.  There really is a wolf under
those sheepskins - Emacs is a different beast.  Everything
worth its salt has its own jargon.  Including Emacs.

Gratuitous differences in terminology for identical things
are something else.  But (a) that is rare (the Emacs thingies
are not really the same), and (b) even then it is not
important to toe the line.  Especially if the things are
identical, it is easy to learn new terms for them.

Examples of exceptional things that are identical in Emacs,
or nearly so, are "cut" and "paste" operations.  And as
others have already said, it is enough to point out the
Emacs terminology and the correspondences (when there are
close correspondences and not just faux amis) - which we
already do, AFAIK.

If you think that initiation into the ways and jargon of
Emacs is just too darn hard for today's kiddies, I'd say
you're not only pandering (demagogy), you're selling the
kiddies short.  Have confidence.  You learned Emacs, and
no, you ain't no smarter or tougher than they are.

(Now if we just get rid of Emacs, I think that would take
care of most confusion...)

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