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Re: On improving Bookmarks

From: Matthias Meulien
Subject: Re: On improving Bookmarks
Date: Wed, 16 Nov 2022 08:23:59 +0100
User-agent: Gnus/5.13 (Gnus v5.13)

Gabriel <gabriel376@hotmail.com> writes:

> (...) I think there are some opportunities for improvements in
> Bookmarks (in general and in how it support Types) and would like to
> collect general feedback and directions before reporting bugs or
> proposing patches, especially considering if such changes would be
> useful, the effort to implement them and how to handle compatibility.

Thank you!

> 1) The empty "Type" column on C-x r l (bookmark-bmenu-list)
> Bookmarks shows a proper value in the Type column of
> bookmark-bmenu-list for all Types, except for regular "Files" and
> "Directories", in which shows an empty string.  I believe that
> displaying the actual Type rather an empty string for these cases
> would make the interface more consistent and easier for navigation.


> See bug#59212 for the open discussion.  Besides the question regarding
> the real value of this change, I currently don't know how to easily
> distinguish between "Files" and "Directories" without relying on IO
> calls (e.g. file-directory-p), which could degrade performance in case
> of long Bookmarks lists.  We could display the string "File" for both
> "Files" and "Directories", but it would be a worse experience for
> users to not provide such distinction.

Yes you're right.

If I remember correctly, when serialized, those "Files and Directories"
bookmarks aren't associated to a handler.  Introducing distinct handlers
for both would help to have a meaningful "type" value.

> 2) The usage of "File" and "Filename" in docs and interface (...)
> 3) Add Type to bookmark-sort-flag
> A simple suggestion to add Type to the choices of bookmark-sort-flag.

I am no against, but I'm not sure I'll use it.  Extending the / key
(bookmark-bmenu-search) to mimic what is done por packages would be more
interesting from my pov (ie make it a prefix key and for example have /
n filter by name, / t filter by type, and / l filter by location).

> 4) Make R (bookmark-relocate) work for all Types


> 5) Ability to open Bookmarks with external applications (...)
> 6) Add minibuffer completion details to C-x r b (bookmark-jump)


> 7) Add Tags


Let me mention two things I have in my wishlist:

8) Hability to scope bookmarks to Projects.

When setting a bookmark from a buffer attached to a project, I'd like to
have the choice of a bookmark scope: global or current project.

When jumping to a bookmark from a buffer attached to a project, I'd then
expect to have choice from bookmarks with global scope and bookmarks
with scoped to current project.

A project-bookmark-bmenu-list command could be created that displays
bookmarks with global scope and scoped to current project.  

I don't know whether one should extend bookmarks with a scope property
or store bookmarks in projects (using .dir-locals.el or a dedicated

9) Improve support for multiple bookmark files

I first thought 8) wouldn't be a problem if I maintained a bookmark file
in each project.  Unfortunately when you press the s key from bookmark
BMenu, the default bookmark file is overwritten with bookmarks coming
from multiple sources...

And when jumping there's no way to select the bookmark source...

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