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Re: I wrote a mini manual for Emacs

From: MBR
Subject: Re: I wrote a mini manual for Emacs
Date: Mon, 16 Jun 2014 14:11:23 -0400
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Macintosh; Intel Mac OS X 10.8; rv:24.0) Gecko/20100101 Thunderbird/24.4.0

Good work!

I'd like to say something about the section ""I don't want a complicated 'editor', I want something simple like Notepad(++)" in which you talk about IDEs. When I started using Emacs (after about 10 years of using vi), I immediately noticed that Emacs was very different from any other editor I'd ever worked with. With all other editors, I'd use them for editing text and do everything else from a shell prompt.

But once I started using Emacs I started telling people, "Emacs isn't an editor, it's a way of life!" What I meant by that was that I found I was starting up a single instance of Emacs in the morning, and virtually everything I did the rest of the day was done inside Emacs. If I needed to run a shell command, I'd do that inside an Emacs shell buffer because that way the command's output was automatically captured in the buffer and I could then use it like any other text - comparing it to other things with compare-window, searching for regular expressions in the output, saving some interesting portion of the output by simply copying it to a file, etc., etc.

Besides being able to run a shell inside the "editor", you could run your compiler and linker straight from Emacs and have it parse and highlight any errors; you could debug your code inside Emacs with gdb and later gud, and have many added benefits over running gdb directly from the shell. One of those benefits is having it show you the source code, including a pointer showing what line of code you're about to execute.

The bottom line is that Emacs actually is an IDE, not merely a text editor. It just happens to be an IDE that works on a dumb terminal. As a matter of fact, it's the original IDE! It existed before any of the GUI-style IDEs existed, and many features commonly found in IDEs were copied from Emacs.

So, it wouldn't hurt to emphasize at the beginning of your Mini Manual that Emacs should not be thought of as an editor. It is a software development environment with powerful text editing capabilities. And it's much more than even that!

   Mark Rosenthal

On 6/16/14 1:24 AM, Tu Do wrote:
  Hi everyone,

I wrote an Emacs Mini Manual for complete beginners to be productive with
Emacs common tools without having to look all over the manual. It provides
a starting point before reading the full Emacs manual. Folow this link: Why
This Guide? <> to read it

I hope it will be useful for new people switching to Ubuntu and want to
have a nice development environment. If you find mistakes, please report it
to me. If you think I'm missing commonly used tools or some idiomatic uses
of Emacs, please tell me.


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