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Re: Making Emacs more friendly to newcomers

From: Ahmed Khanzada
Subject: Re: Making Emacs more friendly to newcomers
Date: Thu, 23 Apr 2020 00:04:13 -0700
User-agent: Wanderlust/2.15.9 (Almost Unreal) SEMI-EPG/1.14.7 (Harue) FLIM/1.14.9 (Gojō) APEL/10.8 EasyPG/1.0.0 Emacs/28.0 (x86_64-pc-linux-gnu) MULE/6.0 (HANACHIRUSATO)

> So for all questions about changing defaults, we should ask ourselves,
> do we prioritize the existing 5% (or 3%, as SO poll says) userbase that
> will naturally continue shrinking over the years, or whether we prefer
> to make life easier and more productive for the users that should come
> later.

Looking at the amount of currently maintained elisp packages online
these days, I suspect Emacs actually has more users than ever, it is
just that our segment of the overall market is smaller.

Let's say tomorrow Emacs is like VS Code running Emacs Lisp in a Guile
VM. Is the idea that if we compete in the same modes as the modernist
editors, we can steal enough people from them that we will advance the
cause of free software?

That's not a rhetorical question, I am curious. Right now with the
status quo, we know we are at least satisfying a core audience that has
self-selected themselves as Emacs users through the hazing that is
figuring the damn thing out.

Playing towards your core audience has both benefits and drawbacks.

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