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Browsers inside Emacs (was Re: Concurrency, again)

From: Perry E. Metzger
Subject: Browsers inside Emacs (was Re: Concurrency, again)
Date: Tue, 18 Oct 2016 14:37:58 -0400

On Tue, 18 Oct 2016 16:34:18 +0200 Lars Ingebrigtsen <address@hidden>
> Yes.  It's pretty opaque.  I think it's possible to see a way to
> interact with these objects more naturally by creating a Javascript
> bridge that would expose the DOM fully to Emacs, and then you could
> rewrite all Emacs commands to do things to that DOM.  Like `C-t'
> (transpose-chars) with "point" inside one of these objects would
> look at the DOM around point, figure out the necessary changes, and
> then update the DOM inside the widget.
> And so on.
> But it would be...  er...  a major undertaking, and it would always
> be a toy.
> And it's irrelevant to the concurrency discussion, really.  :-)

It is irrelevant to the concurrency discussion, but I don't think it
is irrelevant overall. I think the ability to do things like edit web
pages inside emacs in WYSYWIG mode with simultaneous changes in the
real web page buffer would be *amazing*, and totally worthwhile, and
it need not be a toy.

There are real applications here beyond just editing web pages and
having Emacs be a really competitive mail reader again even for people
who deal with people that use HTML email all day.

The problem is, though, as I've said, it would be enormous work to do
this, and emacs as it stands wasn't built for this.

Another problem, btw, is that currently there is only Webkit
integration for X users. I get that Windows and Mac are lower
priorities because they aren't free software but it would be important
to have something that is cross platform and not very X
dependent. (Hell, in the medium term, X is getting replaced by Wayland
on GNU/Linux as well.)

Perry E. Metzger                address@hidden

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