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RE: Reserved keymap not reserved anymore?

From: Drew Adams
Subject: RE: Reserved keymap not reserved anymore?
Date: Sun, 17 Nov 2013 16:58:26 -0800 (PST)

> > Drew, don't you think it belongs in the user manual?  This is not
> > a programmer's issue - a user should know which keys he can use
> > for his bindings, and which are reserved.  Do I miss something?

There are NO keys that are reserved for something other than users.
It's the opposite.  Some keys are reserved _for users_.  ALL keys
are available to users for their own bindings.  (I know that you know
this.  Just want to be clear.)
> I think it belongs in both.  In the Emacs manual, as you say, so
> users know about it.  And in the Elisp manual so people writing new
> modes, etc. know about the reservation and don't use it. My $0.02.

My opinion doesn't count for much, but since you ask, no, I don't
really think the whole rundown of key conventions belongs in the user
manual.  What belongs in the user manual somewhere is a cross
reference to the Elisp manual, and some mention of what I said above:
Some key sequences (in particular, `C-c LETTER') are reserved for
users, but users are free to bind any keys they like.

The reason users might want to be aware of the keys that are NOT
reserved for users is that if a user binds such a key it risks
conflicting with some binding established by code, typically
overriding the latter.  But I think the info about the conventions
can be kept only in the Elisp manual and pointed to by the user

Emacs users includes users who write commands and users who bind
commands to keys, of course, in addition to users who do not.  But
to do either of those things you use Emacs Lisp.  The conventions
about key bindings are most useful to someone writing code that
provides a set of key bindings for, e.g., a mode.  The best place
for the detailed info about key-binding conventions is (only) in
the Elisp manual.

Nevertheless, it can save a user some grief over possible conflicts
if s?he is aware of the keys that risk a conflict.  So a cross
reference makes sense.

Someone else decided long ago to move the info to the Elisp manual.
I have not checked whether there is some info in the Emacs manual
that mentions anything about this or, more importantly, cross
references the Elisp manual details.

If you think that readers of the Emacs manual need a litter more
help with this, `M-x report-emacs-bug' is your friend...

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