The Modernization of Emacs: terminology buffer and keybinding

Kaldrenon kaldrenon at
Wed Jun 20 23:03:39 CEST 2007

On Jun 20, 4:49 pm, Twisted <twisted... at> wrote:
> On Jun 20, 4:35 pm, David Kastrup <d... at> wrote:
> > Twisted <twisted... at> writes:
> > > On the other hand, being actively beginner-hostile leads to nobody
> > > adopting the tool. Then again, if you don't mind being the last
> > > generation that'll ever use it, then I guess you're okay with
> > > that. If it suits its existing users, the rest of us will just
> > > continue to use something else.
> > > I continue to suspect that there's an ulterior motive for making and
> > > keeping certain software actively beginner-hostile; a certain macho
> > > elitism also seen with light aircraft pilots and commented on at
> > > escapes me; sorry).
> > You are babbling.
> No, I am not. You, however, are being gratuitously insulting.
> > Emacs is amazingly beginner-friendly for the power and flexibility it
> > provides. [snip]
> That's a joke, right? I tried it a time or two. Every time it was
> rapidly apparent that doing anything non-trivial would require
> consulting a cheat sheet. The printed-out kind, since navigating to
> the help and back without already having the help displayed and open
> to the command reference was also non-trivial.
> Four hours of wasted time later, with zero productivity to show for
> it, I deleted it. The same thing happened again, so it wasn't a bad
> day or a fluke or a one-off or the particular version, either.

I agree with you in that emacs is not inherently nor universally
beginner friendly. However, if you are trying to make the claim that
it is impossible to pick it up quickly, then I no longer agree with

I still have a good deal to learn, even of the basics, but I've toyed
with it casually for a little bit (a total of two hours at most, but
almost certainly less) and I already know enough that finding out how
to do anything else IS trivial. It's not a program whose controls
throw themselves at you, exactly, but with a touch of patience and a
genuine interest in learning, it's not too bad.

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