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bug#21563: 24.5; discourage load-hook variables


From: Stefan Kangas
Subject: bug#21563: 24.5; discourage load-hook variables
Date: Wed, 15 Jan 2020 21:42:39 +0100
User-agent: Gnus/5.13 (Gnus v5.13) Emacs/28.0.50 (gnu/linux)

Drew Adams <address@hidden> writes:

>> I would suggest to declare the above variables obsolete
>> and point users to eval-after-load instead.
>
> Why?  If the only reason (only one given so far) is
> that a user set a hook after loading and expected
> the hook setting to be effective, then I'd say that's
> not a great reason.

I think the idea here was mainly to get rid of redundancy.  But see
below.

> And there was talk at one time of discouraging that as
> well, I believe.  It's still discouraged for code that's
> to be included in Emacs - see (emacs) `Coding Standards'.
> (But see also (emacs) `Foldout'.)
>
> And see (elisp) `Hooks for Loading':
>  "Normally, well-designed Lisp programs should not
>   use 'with-eval-after-load'."
>
> Granted, that's about "Lisp programs" and not init
> files.  Still...
>
>> Does anyone disagree with that?
>
> I think I do.  I see something like `dired-load-hook'
> as a different tool than `(with-)eval-after-load'.
> Not worse or better, either generally or always.
>
> Setting or changing the explicit hook value has
> no effect if the library was already loaded, whereas
> `(with-)eval-after-load' has an immediate effect in 
> that case.  (Sure, the latter could test in its body
> whether it's loaded and act conditionally...)

Good point.  So it seems like load-hooks and eval-after-load are
slightly different and could both be useful.  In that case, I guess
this should be closed as a wontfix?

Best regards,
Stefan Kangas





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