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Re: [PATCH] When deleting in bookmark menu, prompt for confirmation.

From: Jim Porter
Subject: Re: [PATCH] When deleting in bookmark menu, prompt for confirmation.
Date: Mon, 3 May 2021 11:28:12 -0700

On 5/3/2021 10:41 AM, Eli Zaretskii wrote:
From: Karl Fogel <kfogel@red-bean.com>
Cc: Eli Zaretskii <eliz@gnu.org>,  emacs-devel@gnu.org
Date: Mon, 03 May 2021 12:21:36 -0500

Backward compatibility is a big deal in an API, but it's a much
smaller deal in an interactive interface behavior.  Yes, users
will be prompted in a place where they weren't prompted before,
but the prompt is self-explanatory, and the old behavior was
needlessly dangerous -- it's easy to type "x" accidentally and
lose bookmarks marked for deletion before one had finalized the

Noted.  But we are not going to change the default behavior in
incompatible ways on my watch, sorry.

Just a random musing: would there be any sense in adding a global option like `prefer-conservative-defaults' to Emacs 28 and mentioning it in the NEWS so that, come Emacs 29, developers could make modestly backwards-incompatible changes like this while keeping the old behavior for people with `prefer-conservative-defaults' set to t (which they hopefully set upon the release of Emacs 28)?

One downside I see right off the bat is that `prefer-conservative-defaults' == t would roughly mean "keep Emacs like it was in version 28", but a decade from now, someone might prefer Emacs 38 and want conservative defaults starting then. I suppose `prefer-conservative-defaults' could specify a preferred version, and `defcustom' could allow for multiple default values defined by particular version ranges.

Either of these solutions would increase the maintenance burden somewhat for those variables (the second especially), but no one is *required* to make backwards-incompatible changes, so I'd hope this is only done when a developer truly believes that the new behavior is better, and is worried that existing users won't want to change.

This is somewhat academic for me, since I'm an existing user, and I always read the NEWS upon upgrading so I know what, if anything, I'd like to tweak. However, something like this could make it easier to improve Emacs in ways that would make it more attractive to a new user.

Like I said, it's just a thought...

- Jim

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