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Re: Emacs as an external flowed-text editor?

From: Bjoern Voigt
Subject: Re: Emacs as an external flowed-text editor?
Date: 14 Jun 2006 16:08:38 +0200
User-agent: Gnus/5.09 (Gnus v5.9.0) Emacs/21.3 writes:

> I'm not exactly clear on what you're asking here. If you're asking for
> a traditional word wrap with a carriage return (newline) just at the
> end of a paragraph, like word processors do, then try longlines.el. I
> just plopped it into my .emacs file, restarted and it works fine.

Thank you for the tip with "longlines.el". I think it's possible to
compose e-mails with long-lines-mode. The mailer can do the special
format=flowed line wrapping after editing the message.

But I think, that long-lines-mode is not perfect, if I edit mails which
were already stored as a draft with format=flowed encoding or if I edit
replies with "> "-paragraphs.

The flowed format is defined in RFC 3676

Flowed-text capable mailers wrap lines after 66 characters
(configurable) like other mailer too. But the flowed text format knows
two types of line breaks:

  Hard line breaks: <LF>
  Soft line breaks: <Space><LF>

I have attached the example output of emacs after calling the function
"fill-flowed-test" from gnus/flow-fill.el.

The trailing spaces are marked red in the screenshot. A flowed-text
capable program can adjust the line wrapping according to the window
width. Also a flowed-text capable editor preserves the trailing spaces
if it formats a paragraph. 

Because flow-fill.el is already in Emacs/Gnus it's clear that Emacs can
display and compose flowed text. But I don't know what I have to write
into my .emacs file to activate this mode. The "fill-flowed" function is
not interactively avaliable after loading gnus/flow-fill.el with
"load-file", "autoload" or "require".

Greetings, Björn

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