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Re: Adding use-package to core

From: Payas Relekar
Subject: Re: Adding use-package to core
Date: Sun, 13 Nov 2022 17:25:16 +0530
User-agent: mu4e 1.8.11; emacs 29.0.50

xenodasein--- via "Emacs development discussions." <emacs-devel@gnu.org>

>> I don't share Stefan's fears.  If the only issue with moving
>> use-package to core is that someone must step forward to take the
>> responsibility for maintaining it, I think we can move it into core
>> without fear.  I see no reason for making a dedicated maintainer for
>> use-package a prerequisite for importing it, given what John says
>> about its stability.  It's a non-issue.
> Why don't you?  This package has been very popular for a long time and
> at least I haven't seen anyone complain about it not being in core.
> Whatever gets included seem to freeze in time and becomes very hard to
> make non-breaking changes, and their writers probably get frustrated
> from that more easily and stop developing it.  There's ever more lines of
> code and more packages, I don't think this direction is sustainable and
> I hope you will reconsider this approach of adding everything to core
> at some point.

While Eli can speak for maintainers' perspective, here's my personal

It depends on package. Org-mode and modus-themes have only benefitted
from being included in core and their development pace has kept up if
not improved. Eglot progress may be harder to gauge, but at least in my
personal observation, it hasn't reduced.

As for use-package,
1. The package has been stable and working without many complaints for a
lot of people (myself included) for a long time. For all intents and
purposes it can be declared "done" (a.k.a. frozen) and not many will

2. John has already mentioned that he is willing to hand-over maintains
to whoever steps up to the job, and if they want to do it in core,
that's how it will be. He has also mentioned that he doesn't have
sufficient bandwidth to spend on future development of use-package hence
the former statement.

3. Considering the adoption of use-package in wider Emacs userbase, I'd
say it is already near impossible to make breaking changes. Moving to
core only makes that process more formal with decade long deprecation

4. If you need someone to complain about use-package not being in core,
you can count this mail as first. When I started out with Emacs in 2020,
use-package was already recommended way in half the packages I found,
and installing it required adding MELPA. Depending on where you stand
with technical and ethical grounds, this is already not ideal. Less
elisp needed to be understood by newbies (even if one-line MELPA
addition) the better.

5. While as a developer I agree that more code means more maintenance
burden, we are not here to reduce development burden. Only code that is
maintenance free is one that is never written, after all. However, Emacs
is there to serve the needs of users. IME declarative configuration that
use-package provides is so clearly supersior to current imperative
manner that it is worth adding more code, especially if this new code is
as battle tested as use-package is.

6. As for your last point, Emacs is not Python. One of the things I
really really like about Emacs is, even if I never install a single
package, the stock setup gives me a LOT of stuff built-in. While my
personal Emacs is riced to the brim, at work I use plain Emacs with very
very little customization (11 lines in init.el) and it does the job.

Perhaps these points can change your point of opinion. Feel free to
correct wherever necessary.



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