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Re: Some developement questions

From: Radon Rosborough
Subject: Re: Some developement questions
Date: Thu, 30 Aug 2018 17:30:34 -0600

> How is it relevant whether it takes 50ms more or less to start
> Emacs?

Because I can notice a difference of 50ms in a delay that happens very
frequently. And yes, I restart Emacs very frequently. Easily a dozen
times a day if I am doing active development on my Emacs
configuration, which happens often.

> Is that even within the error margin of the measurements?

Sure, there's some variation (although usually less than 150ms). But
the mean value going down by 50ms is equally valuable regardless of
the variance.

> I just keep Emacs running on my server in a tmux session.

I know that works for you (and many others), but it doesn't work for
me. The reason it doesn't work for me is that I develop very actively
on my Emacs configuration. This means that Emacs needs to be restarted
frequently to avoid outdated configuration from causing problems
(which, yes, can be worked around easily by evaluating code in the
current session -- but it's a lot easier to just restart and wait half
a second, with no thought required).

The Emacs server also has some big usability problems for me (not
bugs, but just things that make me personally prefer not to use it).
Firstly, the mode line highlighting is shared between all sessions,
and doesn't behave in the way one might expect if one is used to
launching Emacs sessions directly. Secondly, it's not easy to share an
Emacs server between graphical and terminal sessions -- so I'd need to
run two servers, and the problem of having Emacs servers with outdated
configuration gets twice as bad.

> you can't keep up with me anyway ;P

Fair enough. My configuration loads and quits a tty frame in 500ms,
whereas emacsclient does the same in only 100ms. For me, the usability
problems of the server are worth 400ms to avoid, since I don't pop in
and out of Emacs to edit different files, only to reload my

There's not really any point in arguing about which way is "better".
If you want your Emacs state to be clean in the face of a rapidly
changing configuration, it's better to not use the server. If you
don't care about that, nor are you bothered by any of the problems I
mentioned above, then it's better to use the server. It just depends
on your preferences -- but I want to make it clear that there *are*
reasons that some people don't use the server, and actually do care
about init time.


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