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Re: Making a function than can only be used interactively

From: Stefan Monnier
Subject: Re: Making a function than can only be used interactively
Date: Mon, 04 Jul 2022 15:40:13 -0400
User-agent: Gnus/5.13 (Gnus v5.13) Emacs/29.0.50 (gnu/linux)

> Only after byte-compile of a file? 
> So there is no way to actually make a function interactive only?

Please define what it is you mean by "make a function interactive only".

Do you mean that it should be illegal to write code that calls the
function directly, so whoever writes it can be sued?
Would it be acceptable for someone to just think about writing such code
as long as they don't actually write it?

More seriously, what are you trying to gain by "mak[ing] a function
interactive only"?  Usually, the reason why one might want to make
a function "interactive only" is that code that calls this function is
probably incorrect and would likely be served better by some
other function.  So the purpose is to help people write better code.
For this reason the declaration only has an effect in terms of
byte-compiler warnings: those who don't bother to byte-compile their
code presumably don't care about the quality of their code anyway.

Emacs doesn't offer any pre-defined way to really enforce that
a function is only used interactively, and in large parts this is
because, as a matter of design principle, Emacs makes no effort to stop
people from shooting themselves in the foot (instead, it tries to make
it easier for people not to shoot themselves in the foot).


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