[nSLUG] Re: pet peeves

Peter Cordes peter at cordes.ca
Wed Jun 28 13:08:57 ADT 2006

On Tue, Jun 27, 2006 at 04:25:24PM -0300, Mike Spencer wrote:
> > How you can say the above about navigation and still say you love
> > emacs is beyond me. I despise emacs and its info offshoot. Having to
> > learn all of those keyboard navigation shortcuts is only for people
> > who have time to waste learning them instead of getting on with
> > writing their code or whatever.
> Um, they're not "shortcuts", they're, well, *it*. :-)

 info  is not the only info reader in existance.  I remember noticing one or
two Debian packages with descriptions like "so, all the good docs are in
info format, but the info reader is all weird.  Try this package."

> Well, yeah.  Except it's a mail client, news client, file manager,
> shell buffer and extensive other stuff, all mostly using the same
> silly keystrokes learned for the editor.  And (if (want you)((add can)
> you) ((stuff new) "Your own")) with elisp.


> Of course, that all makes
> it an elephantine glom of code and, yes, a learning hurdle rather high
> for leaping from a standing start.

 I like emacs, and use it when I write code, but I usually use jed for
editting config files.  i.e. export EDITOR=jed.  It's an emacslike editor,
and I'm all over the keystrokes like M-<, M-D, ^k, ^y.  But when I'm using
emacs, I always have a really hard time finding out what emacs calls
something.  I can remember that syntax highlighting is 
M-x global-font-lock-mode, and eventually I'll remind myself that line wrap
is M-x auto-fill-mode, sometimes after a bunch of apropos searching with
^H-a.  (And since there are no matches in the help for "wrap", I usually
just have to remember it...).  So my pet peeve with emacs is that the help
never mentions the terms the rest of the world uses to describe the feature.
All I ask is some keyboards thrown in for the benefit of those who don't
live and breathe emacs.

 The other day I wanted to turn on hscroll-mode, but it doesn't seem to do
anything anymore.  (It used to be the equivalent the equivalent of less -S).
There is a menu item to truncate long lines, but I couldn't find out what
command it ran.  Is there any way within emacs to search help on just
emacs's own functions, not all the ones added by the various add-on packages
I have installed (emacs mode for octave, ecb, speedbar, blah blah.) The help
for the important functions seems to get buried under a zillion
mode-specific function.  I guess I should read a book or manual instead of
wishing apropos solved my problem.  Hmm, so I looked at the help on
hscroll-mode, and it's now obsolete.  Now I have to M-x set-variable
to set truncate-lines to "t".  So the help system didn't totally fail me the
second time around, but I'd still rather run M-x hscroll-mode to toggle

#define X(x,y) x##y
Peter Cordes ;  e-mail: X(peter at cor , des.ca)

"The gods confound the man who first found out how to distinguish the hours!
 Confound him, too, who in this place set up a sundial, to cut and hack
 my day so wretchedly into small pieces!" -- Plautus, 200 BC


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