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Re: What's your favourite *under_publicized* editing feature ofEmacs?


From: Cthun
Subject: Re: What's your favourite *under_publicized* editing feature ofEmacs?
Date: Wed, 23 Feb 2011 22:48:54 -0500
User-agent: MicroPlanet-Gravity/3.0.4

On 23/02/2011 5:57 PM, Tim X wrote:
Cthun<address@hidden>  writes:
On 23/02/2011 2:07 AM, Tim X wrote:
Unless you are a power keyboard user, in which case, lifting your hands
from the keyboard to the arrow keys et. al. or to use the mouse to
access menus, is annoying and slows you down.

I will interpret the above as if you had said "unless you are weird, in which
case ..."

I raise the point that there are not as many keys 'free' as you claim
because some people who I referred to as power users, prefer to use
short-cut keys over the mouse, cursor keys etc

A tiny and very strange minority of users, X. Even most people I'd characterize as "power users" do not do such strange things, X.

No-one I know finds having clearly labeled navigation keys annoying, or prefers
goofy, difficult-to-remember crap like

C-n/C-p/C-a/C-e/C-o/C-j etc

Your arguements are weak because they lack any real facts

What does your classic unsubstantiated and erroneous claim have to do with Lisp, X?

Interesting that as soon as I bring up a strong piece of statistical evidence you promptly accuse me of "lacking facts", X.

and it is obvious you are just arguing for the sake of it.

What does your classic unsubstantiated and erroneous claim have to do with Lisp, X?

Anyone in doubt can just look at your resonses to the numerous posts
regarding auto-save

Classic pontification.

and the weak counter arguements you presented which don't even fit with the
facts.

What does your classic unsubstantiated and erroneous claim have to do with Lisp, X?

You would recommend that everybody blow $2-300 on an extra chunk of expensive
electronics in preference to *having to type ctrl-S every couple of minutes to
protect themselves from data loss*? Are you fucking nuts? Or maybe just
stinking rich or something. Well then I've got news for you, buddy -- not all
of us, or even anywhere close to very *many* of us, can just go rooting under
the sofa cushions and come up with $300 worth of spare change anytime the
whimsy strikes them to go splurge at the local Best Buy.

If you have unreliable power supplies and don't have a UPS then your an
idiot.

What does your classic unsubstantiated and erroneous claim have to do with Lisp, X?

Unreliable power will not just cause loss of data, it will cause
hardware damage.

What does your classic unsubstantiated and erroneous claim have to do with Lisp, X?

Power that sometimes cuts out does not cause damage to well-designed hardware, X. Surges can cause damage, but are rarer. Surge suppressors are also available much more cheaply than UPS units, X.

Furthermore, you run the risk of your saved file being currupted as
a result of the power outage anyway, making your frequent saves
pontless.

Only if the program is poorly designed, X. Smart developers make the save function save to a temporary file, then rename the temporary file over the old one, so if the power cuts out before the rename the previous version is still intact and if it cuts out after the subsequent one is intact. The file with the normal name is never in a half-written, truncated, or otherwise corrupt state, X.

You also over-estimate the cost of a UPS.

What does your classic unsubstantiated and erroneous claim have to do with Lisp, X?

You can pick up small UPS systems for just over $150

Hardly an improvement, X. It would have to be an order of magnitude cheaper than $300 to be an option for most people, X, not just a factor of two, and furthermore the cheapest units also don't provide any significant battery life. In a typical power outage they will only postpone the inevitable, X.

which is little compared to the cost of replacing a system damaged
from power problems.

I have had numerous power failures, X, but have yet to see a system damaged from power problems. You overestimate the frequency with which that occurs. Perhaps where you come from the power quality is poor and surges are frequent, X; but this is not true elsewhere.

Who said we were necessarily talking about computer programmers here? Heck,
with a decent language (i.e. a Lisp) with strong abstraction facilities (i.e.
higher-order functions, macros) the amount of code you have to write is
basically logarithmic in the complexity of the application, rather than linear.
Good programmers don't actually need to do all that much typing, so much as
thinking and designing and planning and of course testing and debugging. Bad
programmers can go hang. Novelists, data entry clerks, and the like aren't
using CVS/git/Subversion.


Version control systems don't need to be cvs/svn/git/whatever.

The exact one chosen is not important, X. Only the fact that not everyone using a text editor is using it to develop software, X. For that matter, not everyone using it to develop software uses it solely for that, X. And not everyone using it to develop software is developing all of it for big, established companies and/or open source projects that have repositories, X. Sometimes it's for personal use, learning, or whatever, X.

anyone who relies on remembering to save regularly in order to protect
their data is doomed.

What does your classic unsubstantiated and erroneous claim have to do with Lisp, X?

Of course, if they are using a good editor, it will automatically create
a backup file for them.

Good luck finding it, or in all likelihood even realizing that it even created
one if there's no overt indication of the existence of the feature. (And if
it's turned off by default, so much the worse.)

Its very obvious you know nothing about emacs

What does your classic unsubstantiated and erroneous claim have to do with Lisp, X? Besides, we were not discussing emacs specifically at that point, X, but a generic "good editor" with some backup functionality.

and are attempting to talk with authority when you have little understanding
of the facts.

What does your classic unsubstantiated and erroneous claim have to do with Lisp, X?

If you have used emacs and had the unfortunate situation of a power outage,
crash etc, you would be more familiar with how its auto-save feature
works

What does your classic unsubstantiated and erroneous claim have to do with Lisp, X? For most emacs features, you can only become familiar with how that feature works, or even with the fact that it exists, from being shown the ropes by a mentor, X; mere need does not suffice, X, because emacs does not provide a way to browse through its features and options like a modern application does, X.

and would not have written the above garbage.

What does your classic erroneous presupposition have to do with Lisp, X?

You'll wind up spending more time searching the filesystem for plausible names
for this backup file than you'd have spent hitting control-S, unless it's right
there next to the original with an only slightly altered name.

which it is by default.

In what editor(s), X? In the context of the above paragraph no single specific editor had been being discussed.

We should not restrict or constrain things to cater for a few who use
bad workflows at the cost of benefits for the majority who do the right
thing.

Ah, I'd recognize that overweening arrogance anywhere. You must be a comp.emacs
regular rather than from comp.lang.lisp. You emacs fanatics really are all
alike, arencha?

I'll try to be less arrogant if you try to be a bit smarter.

What does your classic erroneous presupposition have to do with Lisp, X?

YOU may be both able and willing
to spend more on your disks than on your actual computer proper but that's
hardly something on which you can base sound advice for the rest of the world.

You must be living in the dark ages.

What does your classic unsubstantiated and erroneous claim have to do with Lisp, X?

My last two computers, commodity hardware purchased from the local computer
shop came with RAID built-in.

Most of us do not have access to such an unusual computer shop, X. Most computer shops do not sell built-in RAID, X.

This isn't high end stuff anymore - it is a standard feature of modern
systems.

What does your classic unsubstantiated and erroneous claim have to do with Lisp, X? I dare you to browse the shelves of any major computer retailer, X -- Best Buy, Circuit City, Future Shop, Office Depot, or etc. -- and try to find RAID as even a rare and expensive extra, X, let alone a "standard feature" on a line of reasonably-priced desktop computers, X.

Oh, yeah, that's right, you're rich enough to splurge on UPSes and RAIDs -- I
guess you don't need to actually work for a living, handle office documents,
run work-related software that is proprietary and not ported to anything but
Windows, etc. Lucky you. Wish we were so fortunate.

Ah, yes, the poor old victim mentality.

What does your poor old victim mentality have to do with Lisp, X?

As with much of your other responses, your arguements are outdated or
just completely wrong.

What does your classic unsubstantiated and erroneous claim have to do with Lisp, X?

I use windows every day at work.

What does that have to do with Lisp, X?

I've not had a crash or a blue screen in years.

Classic contradiction.

Believe it or not, Windows has improved a lot from where it use to be.

What does your classic unsubstantiated and erroneous claim have to do with Lisp, X?

You have no idea about the modern work environment and the level of
awareness regarding data protection, corporate records management, etc.

What does your classic unsubstantiated and erroneous claim have to do with Lisp, X?

You have little grasp regarding modern storage systems or even the
level of protection built into basic commodity hardware or even the
vast range of low cost solutions out there

What does your classic unsubstantiated and erroneous claim have to do with Lisp, X?

and you totally underestimate the sophistication and awareness of
most average users.

What does your classic unsubstantiated and erroneous claim have to do with Lisp, X?

Your insistance on the need for end users to have save file on a
single depth key bindings because it is a frequent operation is
over stated and outdated.

What does your classic unsubstantiated and erroneous claim have to do with Lisp, X?

There is little justification for wasting valuable single depth key
bindings for saving and opening files.

If you're rich and can therefore afford UPSes, RAIDs, and to use a maverick OS
that shuts you out of interoperating with any nine-to-five work stuff, perhaps.

No, there are lots of solutions, you just have to decide to not be a
victim and look for better answers.

What does your classic unsubstantiated and erroneous claim have to do with Lisp, X?

I also suspect that those who use unreliable systems with unreliable
power supplies and adopt poor practices are also likely the type of
person who doesn't bother learning key stroke short-cuts and uses the
menu to save/open files. Using scarce single depth bindings would be
wasted on them.

What about people that are stuck with unreliable systems, unreliable power
supplies, and unreliable operating systems and don't adopt poor practices?

Ignoring the fact that anyone in that situation is not going to find
frequent saving much help anyway

What does your classic unsubstantiated and erroneous claim have to do with Lisp, X?

and ignoring the fact we have not taken away their ability to save

Hiding it where nobody will ever find it without expert help effectively takes away the ability, X.

in fact, have only argued the existing configuration is fine and
ignoring the fact emacs' auto-save works well

What does your classic erroneous presupposition have to do with Lisp, X?

and without all the ficticious counter-arguements you presented

What does your classic erroneous presupposition have to do with Lisp, X?

we are left with a basic contradiction in your statement.

What does your classic unsubstantiated and erroneous claim have to do with Lisp, X?

If they don't adopt poor practices, they will have a far better solution
than using manually controlled regular saving of their data.

What does your classic unsubstantiated and erroneous claim have to do with Lisp, X?

In reality, if they have an unreliable system, unreliable power supply
and unreliable operating systems and they adopt good practices, they
would be addressing the cause of the problem and not focusing on the
symptom.

Only if they won the lottery, X.

is not as arbitrary as it may seem. There is a pattern

Yes, maximum annoyance, confusion, and incompatibility with everything else in
the known universe. Everyone who tries emacs quickly spots the pattern. Except
maybe for a few assorted nuts and fruits.

If you don't like it, then why are you here?

What does your question have to do with Lisp, X?

Nobody is forcing you to use it

How fortunate, since I refuse to touch emacs on general principles, X.

and in fact, many would likely ask you not to.

How odd. Why should they care what editor I use, X?

While many people may find them alien because of what they have used
before, their efficiency is very good.

Alien and efficient at driving men mad. I think that confirms what we've always
suspected: emacs is not actually a text editor at all, but rather a diabolical
incantation slightly more complex than "Ia! Ia! Cthulhu fhtagn!" and arising
from exactly the same source.

and again, if you don't like it, why post to an emacs newsgroup?

Because you crossposted to one, X.

I often wonder if those who are affected would have found any system
which used as many key bindings, regardless of what style, would have
suffered the ill effects anyway

More awkward ctrl-alt-etc. chording = less RSI? On what planet? Oh yes, of
course, *that* one, from whence came he who lies dreaming.

and yet, for each person you can point to who has suffered RSI after
using emacs, I can point to one who has used it longer that has not.

Classic pontification. All that says is that RSIs have an overall incidence under 50%, X. We knew that already. It does not rebut my point.

It is obvious you have an issue with the emacs' keybinding defaults

Classic pontification. It is obvious that the vast majority of computer users have an issue with emacs' keybinding defaults, or would have one if they attempted to use that behemoth, X.

and it would seem the software as a whole

Classic pontification.

and it now seems clear you are just being a troll and arguing for the
sake o it.

What does your classic unsubstantiated and erroneous claim have to do with Lisp, X?

I will not be responding further.

Famous Last Words.


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