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Re: Elisp LSP Server

From: Ag Ibragimov
Subject: Re: Elisp LSP Server
Date: Sun, 10 Oct 2021 07:48:56 -0500

Po Lu <luangruo@yahoo.com> writes:
> The OP was proposing that Emacs integrate (by providing imenu
> functionality to Visual Studio Code through LSP) with a particular
> feature of GitHub, where, through proprietary JavaScript and a
> proprietary plugin, anyone can press "." to immediately view code from
> GitHub in VS Code.

Not quite. I'm not suggesting at all integrating with proprietary software. I'm 
merely curious if anyone has ever thought about implementing an LSP server for 
Emacs Lisp.
LSP is a standard and an open specification. There already exist several dozen 
implementations of Language Protocol servers for many different languages.
And many of them are perfectly usable in Emacs, thanks to eglot and lsp-mode. 
And that's great because adhering to the standard makes it a smooth experience 
for the user.

One of the main reasons people leave Emacs, sometimes even after many years of 
using it, is the substandard language support.
They often have to start programming in another language, and it takes too much 
effort to make Emacs work for a specific language.
Simple things like goto definition and autocomplete often won't work as 
expected. People often have to learn a bunch of independent Elisp packages and 
figure out ways to make them work together nicely.
So many times I've heard: "I love Emacs, used it for almost [so many years] but 
I had to work with a language [X] and moved to [another] IDE that has 
first-class support for it."

LSP, for many Emacsen has become a true game-changer. You don't have to 
re-invent the wheel for every single different language, no need to map and 
re-map the keys (separately for every language) or struggle when a language 
mode package authors fail to include some features.
Wouldn't it be ironic if soon, Emacs gets truly fantastic support for dozens of 
languages (btw, that list is still growing), yet Elisp would have to ride like 
a second-class passenger?

I think creating Elisp LSP server would provide consistency with all other 
languages already supported.
And as a side effect, that would also make it possible for better navigation 
and code introspection of Elisp outside of Emacs.
Personally, I don't care if a proprietary software vendor like GitHub 
introduces better features for a language that is the ultimate epitome of free 
Their non-free software would still be written in Emacs (at least some parts of 
it) - the ultimate tool with unmatched support for programming languages.

Thanks, Ag

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