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RE: reading a variable from the user

From: drain
Subject: RE: reading a variable from the user
Date: Wed, 10 Oct 2012 18:09:50 -0700 (PDT)

strings.el and simple+.el are new to me: thanks. They may contain the answer,
and I need to pick through them carefully, but I'll just be forthright about
what I am trying to do. Very new to Emacs Lisp...

I want to prompt myself with "To:", enter a contact name and a topic, then
pass them as arguments to compose-mail.

This was no problem, but the goal right now is to cut out the redundant
conditional statement, and instead match the name string I enter to its
variable directly, for example "William" to the William variable. Might
require pointers or arrays of some sort, but I haven't gotten that far in
the Emacs Lisp Intro.

Here's what I have:

(defun custom-compose-mail (Contact Topic)
  (interactive "sTo: \nsTopic: ")
  (setq William ""
        David ""
        Jason ""
        Carl "")
  (cond ((equal Contact "William") (setq Contact William))
        ((equal Contact "David") (setq Contact David))
        ((equal Contact "Jason") (setq Contact Jason))
        ((equal Contact "Carl") (setq Contact Carl)))
  (compose-mail Contact Topic)

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