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Re: What does 'run' do in cperl-mode?

From: Alan Mackenzie
Subject: Re: What does 'run' do in cperl-mode?
Date: Tue, 29 Jul 2008 11:52:50 +0000
User-agent: Mutt/1.5.9i

Hi, Xah!

On Mon, Jul 28, 2008 at 03:54:35PM -0700, Xah Lee wrote:

> > Maybe the only reason some parts of Emacs haven't been updated is
> > because of missing man power.  Who knows?  Maybe you can start on
> > those 4 hours of query-replace, then.

> Thanks for the encouragement. I just might down the road start my own
> emacs cult... creating a emacs distro that's just my ideal of what
> functional, BEST efficient, software should be like. I have actually
> thought about this several times in the past year.

Please do that!  For one thing, you'll then find out just how time
consuming your changes will be to implement.

> For one thing, it's very difficult to change GNU Emacs on issues such
> as these.

It is.  The difficulties are primarily technical, not political (though
they're political too).

> The most effective way to make such change, is just have a capable
> coder and fork it, like Xemacs and Aquamacs did. Then, it'll wipe out
> emacs marketshare almost overnight. Then, the GNU Emacs people will,
> without any asking, seriously do all the changes, as it happened with
> Xemacs. (in my opinion, Xemacs is largely responsible for propelling
> user oriennted features we see in emacs today, took emacs about a
> decade to catch up.)

I don't think that'll happen at all.  But try it - it can't do any harm.

> So, either i try to spend tons of time to be the salesman for emacs
> modernization, or i actually take things into my hands and start my
> own emacs distro. The actually coding part for the latter will prob be
> dwarfed by all the associated tasks of running a website with public
> annoucement and communities etc.

The problem is that what you think of as "modernisation", others see as
"dumbing down".

> When i run my own emacs distro, info doc will be considered
> supplementary to html/xhtml. HTML will be the primary doc format, with
> its 1000 times more user base and tools and perhaps 10 times more
> technically powerful and flexible.

??? HTML is much less powerful than Info.  Viewing info within Emacs,
you've got all the power of Emacs, and many useful viewing commands - on
top of that, info is all text, so it displays instantly, in contrast to
stuff in a web brower, which takes a noticeable time to render.

In fact, info is so far ahead of html that if some researcher from a
foreign planet were do descend on Earth and compare the two formats, he'd
think that html arrived first, then info developed from it.  In fact, it
was more the other way around.

Html is ghastly for reading manuals.

> But likely the html will still be generated by texinfo. Doc in info
> format will still be used i think, since it's a beautiful plain text
> hyperlink doc system. (ok, i'm allowed to have some wild future vision
> here...)

> PS one element that came to me i missed in the discussion of the labor
> of using the address@hidden@address@hidden@~] notation ....

Yes, Xah, that garbage is what your squiggles look like on a terminal
which isn't equipped with squiggle filters.  "Feel free" to stop dumping
such garbage on English language fora, please.

> .... in emacs is that the notation should also show in menus, of
> course. (as opposed to just changing the info doc) I haven't looked at
> coding menus in elisp...  would it be just change one source code
> location for keybinding display and all menus of every mode will
> display using the ???Alt+???key??????  notation?

There are people who already use alt-key combinations in Emacs - the alt
key is not the same as the meta key.  You're going to screw them.  There
are people, not a few, who bind meta-key key sequences in their elisp
files.  Are you going to insist on them making incompatible changes, so
that what used to be

    (global-set-key '[M-insertchar] 'show-debug-string)

will have to be changed to

    (global-set-key '[A-insertchar] 'show-debug-string)

?  No, you won't.  What you'll actually do, once you become aware of the
problem, is to allow the 'M' modifier to remain "for the time being", as
a backward compatibility cludge.  10 years later, if Leeemacs is still
around by then, that "temporary" cludge will still be there.

And the same will hold for countless other little details you haven't
thought through yet.

On the other hand, if you were willing to get to grips with real problems
in Emacs, you'd be most welcome to contribute.

>   Xah

Alan Mackenzie (Nuremberg, Germany).

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