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Re: [Help-nano] Soft-Wrap and Show-Codes?

From: David Lawrence Ramsey
Subject: Re: [Help-nano] Soft-Wrap and Show-Codes?
Date: Fri, 13 Oct 2006 13:13:30 -0400
User-agent: Thunderbird (X11/20060909)

Dan Mahoney, System Admin wrote:


> Warning, a little long, but a lot of explanation of various
> circumstances.
> When I first learned to type it was on my dad's Smith Corona
> typewriter. I learned that the bell meant "hit return soon".  When we
> finally got a computer (running OMG WordStar under CP/M) it took me
> six months to UNLEARN hitting return at the end, and I still see it in
> people who are new to computers every day, where their justification
> is uneven, and they occasionally have a line that wrapped itself, but
> they hit return anyway (because they were looking, of course, at the
> keys not at the screen). This is a branch of the same issue.
> Over the course of a year I was composing a story for some time with
> pico and then nano.  An 80,000 word story.  And I was letting people
> just read the textfile in their browser.  Their biggest annoyance was
> that since I was writing it on four different systems, the wrapping
> was at four different points throughout the same textfile.
> The solution here was to write a redirector that ran it through
> txt2html (and it even cached), spat out the correct content-type, and
> showed nice formatting and fonts instead of the blasted courier new
> that so many people complained about.  I'm used to dealing with
> frustrations over this issue. :)

Okay.  Interesting history lesson, by the way :)


> Just like wordperfect or word with "show-codes" or "view all
> characters" on (points at the subject)?

Yes.  I prefer this way, in fact, because it doesn't have the problem
where you can't visually tell the difference between hard and soft wraps
if they're at or near the same place.


> This is true.  It also opens up the possibility of including modes
> where nano behaves with keystrokes a bit more like your standard word
> processor (i.e. ctrl-b inserts <B>, or the RTF sequence for "bold"
> etc).  Perhaps there could even be macro support (i.e. user definable
> prompts which could then be passed to external scripts).  Yum.  But
> that's a WHOLE nother can of worms.



> Livejournal.  The perl-based "jlj" client, in particular.
> The default formatting mode with LJ is that it formats newlines to <br
> />.
> The annoyance here is that more often than not nano's idea of what the
> screen should look like either looks like:
> this is a paragraph that got hit by nano's auto-wrapping and also wrapped
> by being displayed
> on livejournal.  Since nano wrapped the lines at some width that has
> nothing to do with
> the width of your livejournal screen, it becomes REMARKABLY annoying to
> read when it was
> typed as one standard paragraph with no carriage returns at all.
> Or, on the occasions I'm using it on a small terminal (like my phone):
> this is a paragraph
> that got hit by nano's
> auto-wrapping and also
> wrapped by being
> displayed...
> A paragraph, as concerns this, should be a SINGLE LONG LINE.  The
> browser will wrap it, regardless of browser screen width (and I
> believe LJ also adds newlines WITHOUT doing the translation).
> You can turn that formatting *off*, but then I'd have to be typing the
> <br>'s myself which is just annoying for doing stream-of-consciousness
> writing.

Okay, I finally understand your problem.


> "Read 212 lines, long lines soft-wrapped".
> "Line 4, position 1,282".  Chances are, if you're writing using a
> language that understands long lines (even if it's say, perl with a
> complicated regex), it will say that that line is where the error is,
> and since I'd consider this to be a non-default mode, I'd expect
> anyone who turns it on to understand that *yeah*, that's what it's
> *supposed* to do.

Good point.


> Don't worry about that.  It's on my wish-list, that's all.  It's not
> an OMG NEED THIS FEATURE.  I've got workarounds in place on it.  I
> apologize for the length of this email, but I wanted to detail exactly
> how and why I had worked around it.

No problem.


> I imagine if you had the DEC character set working you could probably
> get the neat dash-level dot for a space, as well as as the |P
> (paragraph marker) as well as that nifty single character ">>", or
> even the "arrow" working.  Representing it in your more standard
> character sets could be interesting.

Characters like this are also in both ISO-8859-1 and Unicode (» is 187
and U+0000BB; ¶ is 182 and U+0000B6; · is 183 and U+0000B7).

> Heh, I toiled once to play with doscmd and the like to try to get
> wordperfect for dos working on my shell -- only to realize that your
> average SSH app does not parse alt-f7 :)
> Anyway, apologies for the length.  I hope I've laid my logic out
> clearly. Let me know if it all makes kinda-sorta sense.

As I said above, no problem.  It does make some sense.

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