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Re: Convert README.org to plain text README while installing package

From: Akib Azmain Turja
Subject: Re: Convert README.org to plain text README while installing package
Date: Mon, 06 Jun 2022 18:26:42 +0600

Alan Mackenzie <acm@muc.de> writes:

> Hello, Tim.
> On Mon, Jun 06, 2022 at 10:19:38 +1000, Tim Cross wrote:
>> Michael Albinus <michael.albinus@gmx.de> writes:
>> > I have no problem if there are structured README.org or README.md
>> > files in parallel. But a README file should be plain text.
> I agree with this.
>> I've seen this mentioned multiple times in this thread and it doesn't
>> make sense to me. 
>> Org files *are* plain text. This is one of (perhaps the biggest) selling
>> points for org mode. They don't use any form of 'binary' data and can be
>> read just fine in any text editor or just using cat/less/more whatever.
> We're reduced to arguing about the meaning of "plain text".  The way I
> see it, plain text means to be read as is by the user.  In that sense,
> the formats you mention below, xml, html, etc. are _not_ plain text -
> they're designed for machine processing.  A typical spam email in HTML
> has the human readable pieces swamped by the machine readable pieces.  I
> think you're arguing that this isn't the case with org mode files, though
> Philip Kaludercic pointed out an org file where this wasn't the case.
>> They may look a little *ugly*, especially with respect to URLs, but are
>> still quite readable - a lot more readable than other plain text formats
>> such as xml or html or json etc.
> And their performance in standard programs like grep, wc, etc. is that
> much worse than plain text.
>> I also find arguments based around org being complex and difficult to
>> learn to be somewhat overstated.
> There are 784 key bindings in org mode.  How can you say that this isn't
> complex and difficult to learn?
>> Org is powerful and very configurable, ....
> That contradicts your previous statement to some extent.  Any program
> which is very configurable _needs_ to be configured.
>> .... which means there can be a lot to learn if you want to leverage
>> off all it has to offer.
> I don't want to do this.  I want to avoid org mode being loaded into my
> Emacs; it fouls up my key bindings to a significant extent.  Particularly
> if I just want to read a 50 line README.
>> However, like emacs, the basics are very simple and easy to learn. 
> I don't agree that the basics of Emacs are simple and easy to learn at
> all.  That's a strong reason why other editors have become popular.  Why
> should I have to spend time learning a super-complicated mode just to
> read a 50 line README?
>> While I'm not arguing that org should be forced upon everyone ....
> If a README file is README.org, then org mode is forced upon anybody
> wishing to read it in Emacs.  This is why README files should be plain
> text.
>> .... and I would agree we need to keep potential load time issues in
>> mind, there seems to be lots in this thread over stating the issues and
>> jumping to extremes.
> I think org mode is an extreme, with its 784 key bindings which seem to
> violate written and unwritten conventions.
>> All that seems to really be under consideration is to enable rendering
>> of *org files in help buffers using org font locking and perhaps
>> enabling folding, which could be very beneficial for large readme files
>> and would not matter for small ones. I also suspect this is something
>> which could be disabled with a simple variable setting for those who
>> really don't like it. 
> "It" could best be avoided by having plain text README files.
> -- 
> Alan Mackenzie (Nuremberg, Germany).

Just to add, many of those 784 keybindings of Org are DWIM or
context-dependent, which makes it even harder to learn.

Akib Azmain Turja

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