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RE: Converting an Integer into Human Readable String

From: Drew Adams
Subject: RE: Converting an Integer into Human Readable String
Date: Thu, 7 Apr 2011 11:51:52 -0700

> > > Beware: this has side effects.  It doesn't just return a string.
> > What side effects?  Where are they documented?
> It affects the display.  In the ELisp manual.

Can you be more specific?  Do you mean node `Emulating Mode Line'?

AFAICT, the only thing it says about display happening (side effects) is in the
final Note and the example following it.  That is, the only case it mentions
(AFAICT) where display actually happens is if you pass one of "`mode-line',
`mode-line-inactive', or `header-line' as FACE".

Did you have something else in mind, or was that it?  Is this text exhaustive
wrt side effects, or is it missing something?

[FWIW - The fact that this side effect happens (only?) wrt 3 particular faces
seems like a design bug.  A priori, a function designed "to compute the text
that _would_ appear", as an emulation, has no business actually changing the
display.  But I imagine there were some good reasons for coupling the two
functionalities (emulation and real effect).]

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