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Re: Emacs 26.1 release branch created

From: Paul Eggert
Subject: Re: Emacs 26.1 release branch created
Date: Thu, 21 Sep 2017 22:19:53 -0700
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux x86_64; rv:52.0) Gecko/20100101 Thunderbird/52.3.0

Alan Mackenzie wrote:
I have redefined
the value of nil in text-quoting-style to mean "no translation of
quotes" and introduced t to mean "prefer curved quotes", the meaning nil
previously had.

Let's not change the semantics of text-quoting-style's values. Such a change is not worth the compatibility hassle to users. John asked you to propose a patch to make text-quoting-style customizable, not to change its semantics. Whether text-quoting-style is customizable is orthogonal to what its values mean, and we shouldn't conflate the two issues.

 quotes.  In contrast, a call using a format like @t{"Missing '%s'"}
 with only apostrophes typically generates a message like @t{"Missing
 ’foo’"} with only closing curved quotes, an unusual style in English.
+One way around this problem is to bind @code{text-quoting-style} to
address@hidden around the call to @code{error}; this causes the
address@hidden quote characters to be output unchanged.

This doc patch, which occurs in multiple places, heads in the wrong direction. "Missing `%s'" is the typical way to quote in Emacs source code. The current documentation gently warns the programmer to avoid "Missing '%s'" as this is not the usual Emacs style and typically won't look good anyway. If the warning is not clear enough we should clarify it, not encourage proliferation of atypical formats.

+** The variable `text-quoting-style' is now a customizable option.  It

This (and other changes to NEWS) should use straight quotes, as that's the style used in NEWS now.

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