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

From: David Kastrup
Subject: Re: What's your favourite *under_publicized* editing feature ofEmacs?
Date: Sun, 27 Feb 2011 16:46:43 +0100
User-agent: Gnus/5.13 (Gnus v5.13) Emacs/24.0.50 (gnu/linux)

Cthun <address@hidden> writes:

> On 27/02/2011 3:08 AM, David Kastrup wrote:
>> Cthun <address@hidden> writes:
>>> Oh, really? I for one cannot recall ever seeing a version 1.5 of a
>>> novel or a version 2.0 of a magazine article.
>> Well, I've been responsible for the typesetting software for "Die
>> Kritische Gesamtausgabe der Werke von Ernst Troeltsch"
>> [anecdote trimmed]
>> So definitely there were various versions of the same article published.
> But that's not the same thing as software versioning, or anywhere
> close.

One can still use the same tools nowadays.

>> The gestation of both articles and novels is rarely linear.
> True enough. But it is also not going to fit especially well to what
> systems designed for software revision control do. There is a single
> long piece of text

Which can still be separated into chapters if you like, subject to
reordering and conditional inclusion.

> rather than lots of interacting software modules, for one thing; there
> are no builds or library dependencies or bug reports or feature
> requests.

Last time I looked, revision control did not concern itself with builds
or library dependencies or bug reports or feature requests.

> There's also a point where it's actually *finished*,

Uh, you already forgot what I wrote about the various versions of
articles published several times?

> while software is never finished and has many successive versions
> released, each fixing the bugs in the previous and adding new
> features.

Like a republished polished article.

> In short there's almost nothing of what source code control systems
> are actually there for. If you want to be able to recover deleted
> material you use strikethru (and delete anything still in strikethru
> when it's done) or cut it and save it to a clippings file or
> something.

Gross.  You are not confusing word processing on a computer with
handwritten manuscripts by chance?

_I_ use git for working on non-trivial articles.  There is no point in
juggling "strikethru" or other material around while trying to do actual
work.  There is also no point in manually keeping possibly incomplete
clippings around in an unorganized manner that makes it hard to figure
out a history of changes or undo particular changes.

David Kastrup

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