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Re: [VM] The "Google docs" paradigm

From: Kurt Hackenberg
Subject: Re: [VM] The "Google docs" paradigm
Date: Mon, 22 Oct 2012 23:27:33 +0000 (UTC)

Uday Reddy  <address@hidden> wrote:

>However, Emacs was designed when people mostly used single servers,
>typically from single clients.  We are now a lot more networked.  So,
>having lots of copies of the same file/folder in different places
>with slightly different states adds considerable complexity.  Newer
>generations of users that are brought up on 'Google docs' will tend
>to think we are dinosaurs.
>So, the question is, should we minize the use of the 'Save' button?  Or, at
>least provide a way to do automatic synchronization between clients and

Emacs was designed when there was almost no networking, and no live
filesharing like NFS at all.  Edited files were on local disks.

Emacs assumes there is no concurrent editing -- that only one Emacs at
a time edits a given file.  There are checks to notice and warn you
about concurrent editing, but no attempt to make it work.

VM followed that model -- no concurrent visiting of a given folder --
and should continue to, IMHO, for local folders.  (Or apparently
local, like NFS.)  Partly because VM works by editing the whole mbox
file, and would have to be redesigned to work any other way.

But you're talking about VM being an IMAP client, aren't you?  And
assuming that other clients on other computers are modifying the IMAP
folder concurrently.

I don't have much opinion, but sort of like the idea of things
happening immediately.  IMAP can do that, and sort of looks like it's
meant to.  How do other IMAP clients do it?

I think it's acceptable for VM to have that difference in timing
between IMAP folders and local folders.  VM users are knowledgeable
enough not to be confused by that.  (Emacs is a programmer's editor,
and VM strikes me as a programmer's mail reader.  I expect that
everybody who uses either program is technically knowledgeable.  The
general public doesn't know that Emacs and VM exist, much less use
them, and never will.)

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