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Re: Implicit assumptions in the latest discussions

From: Daniele Nicolodi
Subject: Re: Implicit assumptions in the latest discussions
Date: Thu, 17 Sep 2020 16:45:49 +0200
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Macintosh; Intel Mac OS X 10.14; rv:68.0) Gecko/20100101 Thunderbird/68.12.0

On 17/09/2020 16:01, Robert Pluim wrote:
> Youʼre falling into the "the 'modern' gitlab/github etc dev practices
> are better" fallacy here. Theyʼre more *familiar* to certain people,
> but I donʼt really like them, because too much of the interaction is
> done with a browser (and Iʼm sure Iʼm not alone). See discussions on
> this list about moving to such workflows whilst ensuring that email
> can still be used.

I don't know where you got the impression that I am advocating for Emacs
to be developed using Gitlab or Github. Advances in software carpentry
(a buzzword that nicely encompasses what I am talking about here) best
practices in the last 20 years expand to things completely unrelated to
the use of Gitlab or Github. Unfortunately, hacking on Emacs still
requires obliging to outdated conventions that only stand in the way of

> I think "simplified" is not the goal here, but "more familiar". Unlike
> development practices, I see no issue here with offering that kind of
> experience by default, since I can turn it off easily. The
> "graduation" problem exists, but thatʼs easily solved with
> documentation :-)

I think that this "more familiar" environment is something that no one
has been asking for. Actually, the success of Emacs distributions like
Spacemacs seem to suggest that there is a large population of users that
actually prefer a "less familiar" (when compared to "mainstream" editing
environments) interaction with their editor.

> Thereʼs an effort underway already to port emacs to 'pure' gtk, which
> allows running directly on Wayland. See eg
> <https://github.com/fejfighter/emacs>.

I know, and the effort has been undergoing for years now. What I am
saying is that this effort should be probably prioritized and effort
should be put into removing barriers for it to land in Emacs as soon as

>     Daniele> While the use of a specific graphical toolkit may seems a 
> technical
>     Daniele> issue far from the current discussions, I would like to point 
> out that
>     Daniele> also this is mostly a "social" issue: removing support for other
>     Daniele> toolkits will affect those that for one reason or another prefer 
> to use
>     Daniele> Motif Emacs.
> There are people who are very attached to using the Lucid toolkit, and
> they have valid reasons. Once the 'pure' gtk is in, thereʼs no reason
> to remove Lucid support, but there'd also be no reason to enhance it.

The reason to remove support for obsolete toolkits is that, as long as
they need to be supported, Emacs cannot grow any functionality that
cannot be implemented with them, new functionalities must be coded
against an abstract API that must be grown to encompass them and
implemented N times. If substantial effort should be spent to
future-proof Emads, wouldn't it better to work with the maintainers of a
toolkit of choice to straighten the kinks that make some people prefer
to still use ancient toolkits?


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