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Re: Is intellisense features integration in Emacs technically possible?

From: Stephen J. Turnbull
Subject: Re: Is intellisense features integration in Emacs technically possible?
Date: Wed, 22 Jan 2014 15:28:10 +0900

Eli Zaretskii writes:
 > > Date: Tue, 21 Jan 2014 21:03:29 +0100
 > > From: Andreas Röhler <address@hidden>
 > > 
 > > Bidirection is at the core of any editor - thanks a lot BTW.
 > > Intellisense features must come from accessing the programming
 > > languages itself.
 > Both are extremely important for a modern programmer's editor.  So I
 > don't see the difference, really.

There's a big difference.  Specifically, intellisense in the abstract
is basically completion, the change in UI is a SMOP, and people have
shown a lot of interest in the UI.  Something will happen, although
I'm not sure how close it will be to Visual Studio.

What's left to compare is necessary skills.  Adding bidirection
requires intimate knowledge of both UAX#9 and the Emacs display
engine, and greatly benefits from a native knowledge of what "properly
formatted Hebrew" (or Arabic) looks like.  Not many folks with those
qualifications, or who want to acquire them.  It also may as well be
done all-at-once because UAX#9 exists -- we don't need to fool around
and figure out what is a good algorithm.  We already have a good one,
the only question is whether our implementation is correct.  So it's a
big job few can tackle.

Adding a new language to intellisense, OTOH, is something anybody who
uses the language and knows enough Elisp to write defuns in their
.emacs can help with.  Nor does it need to be done all-at-once, as
long as the basic interface makes it easy to say "shut up and let me
type" case by case (this is what annoys the hell out of me about
intellisense in Japan input methods -- they're pretty bad about
guessing what I'm trying to say, and they don't get out of the way
smoothly -- it's like when you meet somebody in a narrow passage and
you both move to the east, then to the west, then ...).

Adding a new algorithm (eg, based on a full-blown C++ parser) is
harder, but unnecessary to make progress.

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