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Re: Spaces rather than tabs by a major mode hook

From: goncholden
Subject: Re: Spaces rather than tabs by a major mode hook
Date: Sat, 11 Jun 2022 08:17:53 +0000

------- Original Message -------
On Saturday, June 11th, 2022 at 7:19 PM, Eli Zaretskii <> wrote:

> > Date: Fri, 10 Jun 2022 19:52:11 +0000
> > From: goncholden
> > Cc:
> >
> > > > With "emacs -Q" I can only introduce a single tab. If a tab already 
> > > > exists, the cursor goes to the start of the first character.
> > >
> > > That's the intended and correct behavior of TAB in
> > > programming-language modes. What is the problem with it?
> >
> > It is a problem because the authors of the code used multiple tab inserts 
> > for indentation as well.
> When you visit that Fortran file, look at the "Fortran" item in the
> menu bar. Click Fortran->Customization->Fortran->Fortran Indent, and
> you will see a menu that allows you to customize many aspects of the
> indentation of Fortran source files.
> Alternatively, type
> M-x customize-group RET fortran-indent RET
> and you will be presented with a buffer showing the customizable
> options that control indentation in buffers under Fortran mode.
> By modifying these options to match the style used by the authors of
> the files whcih you need to edit, you can resolve those issues once
> and for all, such that typing TAB at the beginning of a line that is
> already indented according to conventions will not change anything,
> and indenting a new line you add will follow these conventions, like
> using a literal TAB for each inner indentation level. All it takes is
> to customize the indentation such that indentation levels are on
> multiples of 8 columns, then indent-tabs-mode set to t will insert
> literal TABs automatically. For example, there's an option that
> customizes the indentation of the IF body, another option for DO body,
> etc.
> > This rejects the use of emacs outright.
> Such a confidence from someone who has yet so much to learn about
> Emacs in general and indentation in particular...
> Given the state of your knowledge in the related areas of Emacs, may I
> suggest some humility? Like asking a question instead of knee-jerking
> a reaction that is not based on reality in any way? This could very
> well result in more people answering your questions, and in your
> learning what you need to learn much faster and more thoroughly.
> Because helping someone with such an attitude is not a very satisfying
> task.

You have complicated the customisation tasks compared to all other languages.  
This tab thing also happens with other languages such as C with multiple tabs.

Have not really seen elisp code to do this.  And for each supposedly solution, 
a multitude other problems crop up.  This is just so that I can modify some 
files.  The experience is that customisations and a big effort in themselves.  
It has not been satisfying for me also, to end up with the huge number of 
customizable variables.

Certainly the original developers could introduce such tabs without spending a 
week trying to customise an editor.  There is no need to be humble.  I treat 
everybody rough as I treat myself.  Just seeing things the way they are.

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