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the "monkey" outline-style directory editor

From: Tom Lord
Subject: the "monkey" outline-style directory editor
Date: Mon, 22 Jul 2002 15:19:09 -0700 (PDT)

I've been casually kicking around a personal directory editor for
about 15 years -- one that I like better than the default "dired"
package.  Recently, I've started a complete
rewrite/simplification/generalization to take advantage of the new
capabilities of GNU Emacs.

Today, I'm releasing the _old_ (pretty stable) version: the one I use
every day.  Enclosed is the README file.  The web site is

I find monkey to be a great tool.  I hope other programmers will enjoy
it and, perhaps, the revised version will show up in GNU Emacs.


         This is Monkey -- a nice directory editor for Emacs

This edition of monkey is being distributed (in the hope that people
will find it useful) for three reaons:

        1) as a _fund raiser_ for the projects at  
           If you obtained this package without paying
           a download fee to, please consider paying 
           such a fee now by visiting
           It will help me to develop additional nice software 
           and avoid homelessness.

        2) to get a sense of how portable this code is to the 
           various Emacs environments

        3) to prepare for a major overhaul: I am in the middle of
           rewriting monkey (to make it more useful as a user
           interface component in another project).  Before I release
           the new version, I'd like to see if there is any feedback
           from users about the current user interface.

Instead of looking at dired listing like this:

  total 154
  drwxr-xr-x   2 lord  lord    512 Jul 22 06:04 .
  lrwxr-xr-x   1 lord  lord     34 Jul 22 06:04 .#README -> address@hidden
  drwxr-xr-x  52 lord  lord   6656 Jul 22 05:57 ..
  -rw-rw-r--   1 lord  lord   1739 Jul 22 05:59 fields.el
  -rw-rw-r--   1 lord  lord   8643 Jul 22 05:59 modal.el
  -rw-rw-r--   1 lord  lord  50063 Jul 22 06:04 monkey-dir.el
  -rw-rw-r--   1 lord  lord  50300 Jul 22 05:59 monkey-dir.el.~1~
  -rw-rw-r--   1 lord  lord   3965 Jul 22 05:59 monkey-nenscript.el
  -rw-rw-r--   1 lord  lord  31880 Jul 22 05:59 monkey.el

Monkey gives you outline-style listings like this:

        /^  .
        /^  ..
        @   =NEWS
        /^  PLUGIN
        /^  meta-x
        />  scheme-library
        /^    scheme-library/.
        /^    scheme-library/..
        /^    scheme-library/PLUGIN
        /^    scheme-library/cgi
        />    scheme-library/wiki
        /^      scheme-library/wiki/.
        /^      scheme-library/wiki/..
        /^      scheme-library/wiki/=bitrot
        /^  systas-web
        /^  {arch}

with expandable/contractable subdirectory listings, file hiding
by-regexp, multiple file selection and operation, and file renaming by
regular expression.

A nice directory editor is a small but important thing: I can't
imagine trying to get a lot of work done without monkey anymore --
it's just too handy.

The recommended `.emacs' for monkey is:

(require 'monkey)

;; monkey bindings:
;; These replace the traditional bindings for "find-file" and
;; similar functions.
;; These bindings don't mess up dired which is still available
;; when you want long directory listings.
(global-set-key "\C-X\C-F" 'monkey-file)
(global-set-key "\C-X\C-V" 'monkey-alternate-file)
(global-set-key "\C-X4F" 'monkey-file-other-window)
(global-set-key "\C-x4f" 'monkey-file-other-window)
(global-set-key "\C-x4\C-f" 'monkey-file-other-window)
(global-set-key "\M-g" 'monkey-current-directory)

;; By default, dot files and backup files (ending in ~) will be
;; hidden from view.
(setq monkey-always-hide-regexp "\\(\\....*\\)\\|\\(\\.[^.]\\)\\|\\(.*~\\)")

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