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Re: [ELPA] New package: transient

From: Alan Mackenzie
Subject: Re: [ELPA] New package: transient
Date: Wed, 29 Apr 2020 17:27:39 +0000

Hello, Philippe.

On Wed, Apr 29, 2020 at 15:12:50 +0200, Philippe Vaucher wrote:

> > > *
> > https://www.gnu.org/software/emacs/manual/html_node/elisp/Association-Lists.html
> > sometimes assoc,
> > >  alist-get, assq, copy-alist. How am I supposed to use `C-h f alist TAB`
> > to discover the function I want? I
> > >  can't, I have to go to that webpage and read it all.

> > I think "C-h d alist RET" is your friend.

> You miss the central point of my argument. The problem is not that the doc
> is hard to find, it's that I *have* to find it to know which are the
> related functions.

Let me put it to you that there is NO PROBLEM here.  If you, for any
reason, forget the function name `assq' you can find it within seconds
by typing i alist in the manual.  And if you don't like reading
documentation, why make that everybody else's problem?

> It is much easier for the mind to think in terms of namespaces, .....

Whose mind would that be?  It is much easier for me to read short words
than long words, and that applies to code as much as to text.

What are you proposing to do?  Replace `assq' with `list-assq'?  YUCK!
This will make code more turgid, and thus more difficult to read.  And
then, will we get `math-+' and `math-*', as though we were programming
in Java?  Double yuck! 

> .... here are examples from other languages:

[ .... ]

> I could go on but I think you should be able to understand my examples.

Maybe, maybe not, but I disagree with you wholeheartedly.

> Once related functions are namespaced together, almost all tooling benefit
> from it. No need to provide a manual grouping the unrelated functions
> together, just document each function:

What "tooling benefit"?  The manual groups related functions together,
not unrelated ones.  You want to fragment the manual into just
documenting each function separately?  I disagree strongly with this,

What you want to do is to bloat out our source code by replacing decades
old traditional names with "namespaced" names.  Taken to extremes, you
want to replace car and cdr with list-car and list-cdr.  People hacking
on Emacs tend to be of a higher intellectual calibre than to need such
mental aids.

>    - autocompletion can help you guess the right function.
>    - searching for function names (C-h f) can help you find the right
>    function.

As can typing i in the manual.

> > > *
> > https://www.gnu.org/software/emacs/manual/html_node/elisp/List-Elements.html
> > > sometimes named logically (nth, remove, append), sometimes named
> > > after implementation detail (car, cdr), and no grouping at all so
> > > I can't `C-h f list TAB`

> > Also, the 'i' command in Info.

> > But you said you didn't want to read manuals, so I'm not sure why the
> > examples are from the manual.

> Again you strawman my argument. Try to understand my central point,
> and then reply to that instead of details of "how you do it right now
> and that works for you".

I understand your central point only too well.  You want to impose
bucket-loads of work, disrupting Emacs development, bloating out code,
making it more difficult to read and understand.  And all for what?  So
that the very occasional trip to a manual by a newcomer can be spared?

Tell me, how would you feel if somebody decided to "namespace" your
name, Philippe Vaucher?  I would guess that you would decide you like
your name the way it is.

> Kind regards,
> Philippe

Alan Mackenzie (Nuremberg, Germany).

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