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Re: (other-window) with negative argument

From: Stephen Berman
Subject: Re: (other-window) with negative argument
Date: Fri, 21 Dec 2018 18:46:15 +0100
User-agent: Gnus/5.13 (Gnus v5.13) Emacs/27.0.50 (gnu/linux)

On Fri, 21 Dec 2018 18:39:28 +0100 Stephen Berman <> 

> On Fri, 21 Dec 2018 17:55:23 +0100 (H. Dieter
> Wilhelm) wrote:
>> Hello ()
>> I can't get a function to work with a negative argument of
>> (other-window).  When I'm using (other-window -1) in the *scratch*
>> buffer it is working as expected, as soon as I put it into a function
>> like the following
>> (defun previous-window ()
>>   (other-window -1))
>> or 
>> (defun previous-window ()
>>   "blabla"
>>   (interactive)
>>   (other-window -1))
>> and activate the function any call to (other-window -1) is opening the
>> debugger!
>> What am I doing wrong?
> Redefining a function, previous-window, which is a primitive Emacs
> function defined in C.  When other-window has a negative argument, it
> calls the built-in previous-window with three arguments, which are
> optional in the built-in version, and since your redefinition takes no
> arguments, this raises the error.  If you name your function
> e.g. my-previous-window, it will work as you expect.

Actually, I think it's irrelevant than previous-window is defined in C;
what causes the error is simply that other-window calls previous-window
with three arguments, but your redefinition takes no arguments.

Steve Berman

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