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Re: [Orgmode] why not auto-renumbering list ?

From: Nicolas Goaziou
Subject: Re: [Orgmode] why not auto-renumbering list ?
Date: Mon, 09 Aug 2010 13:35:05 +0200
User-agent: Wanderlust/2.15.9 (Almost Unreal) Emacs/23.2 Mule/6.0 (HANACHIRUSATO)

>>>>> Carsten Dominik writes:

> First, my apologies that I have so far not found the time to test
> your improved list implementation.

No worries, I needed that time anyways, as some internals have
undergone big changes since then. I particularly think about the now
(hopefully) working indent/outdent code, that was quite hairy to

> Have you had any testing feedback from anyone else so far?

Not yet, unfortunately.

> Have you tested it in all the export backends?

Yes, on all major backends: HTML, LaTeX, ASCII and DocBook.

Well, to be honest, in the case of DocBook, I only looked at the xml
produced, and it seems valid to me. For this exporter, changes were
very similar to those applied to the HTML one anyways.

> I don't think anyone sets this to nil.  But there is a use case for
> this, if someone wants some strange specific numbering,
> then it might be useful to allow turning it off.  There is no harm
> in having this possibility.

There's always (in my branch):

2. address@hidden:2] I like
3. prime numbered
5. address@hidden:5] lists

It sure is heavy on syntax, but benefit is that every exporter will
reflect that unusual numbering.
> While this sounds reasonable - it also unnecessary to me.
> Why fix something that works?

Because it is not consistent in the current implementation. Please
have this test:

Type the following list in an Org buffer, with
`org-auto-renumber-ordered-lists' set to nil.

10. this is
    1. first sub-item
    2. second sub-item
11. a test
12. list

Now, outdent first sub-item: top-level list gets renumbered, no matter
what. Why? Worse: indentation of second sub-item is now wrong. Undo
the indentation. Now cycle bullets of top level list once, to have
parenthesis instead of dot after the number. There goes the numbering.

And, again, exporters, except ASCII, will not take into consideration
hand-numbered lists. This is not consistent either.

As an intermediate solution, I can make
`org-auto-renumber-ordered-lists' really block all renumbering attempt
while still keeping indentation correct. It won't solve the exporter
problem, though.

I honestly don't think hand-numbering lists is a solution. I know Org
is about simplicity, but address@hidden:xx] enforced numbers definitely fare
better here. And use cases are, in my opinion, so infrequent that it
will not cripple Org simplicity either.


-- Nicolas

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