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Re: basic question: going back to dired

From: Bastien Guerry
Subject: Re: basic question: going back to dired
Date: Wed, 23 Jul 2008 01:32:23 +0200
User-agent: Gnus/5.110009 (No Gnus v0.9) Emacs/23.0.60 (gnu/linux)

"Juanma Barranquero" <address@hidden> writes:

> On Tue, Jul 22, 2008 at 18:53, Bastien Guerry <address@hidden> wrote:
>> Yes, as long as the terminology matches the underlying concepts.
> The underlying concept is called a "buffer" because... well, just
> because it has always been called that on Emacs. "scratchpad" would
> have been equally valid, or "workspace" (we're talking more than 20
> years ago, before the current wave of IDEs), or "temporary store" or
> who knows what.

But we're not discussing about what could have been done 20 years ago,
are we?  Discussing the terminology today, my point is that it might be
risky to "import" some terms just because they are commonly used
elsewhere.  If they give the right representation of the thing they
refer to, why not.  

>> For example, replacing "buffer" by "workspace" in the manual would not
>> only be a huge work, it would also be misleading: because you would soon
>> have to deal with expectations that people already have with the notion
>> of "workspace".
> Why the fixation with "workspace"?

Because it's an example of what could seem to be a good candidate for
replacing buffer.  But I think that the representations an Eclipse user
has of a workspace doesn't designate the notion of a buffer adequately.

> We're bound to stick with history. But it is nice (and perhaps even
> useful, in some way) to think what benefit would we gain by using a
> more common terminology. At least that will compel us to choose more
> adequate names for new features.

Sure - I'm just pointing possible pittfalls.

>> I do react about terminology because I think such a discussion is never
>> about terminology only.  It's also about the concepts behind.  If Emacs
>> were more file-centric, then I wouldn't understand why there is no
>> shortcut (sic!) to Open/Close.
> I cannot speak on behalf of others, but certainly I'm talking
> exclusively about terminology.

Okay, but terminology and concepts are often intertwingled.  
That's all the fun of such discussions.

>> Ok, history always comes with some arbitrary choice.  But it's hard to
>> move from an arbitrary choice with a non-arbitrary reason.
> It's hard to move from an arbitrary, deeply ingrained choice, even if
> it'd be useful to do so.

If it's too hard, it can't be that useful...


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