A Exhibition Of Tech Geekers Incompetence: Emacs whitespace-mode

Xah Lee xahlee at gmail.com
Fri Aug 14 03:36:04 CEST 2009

• A Exhibition Of Tech Geekers Incompetence: Emacs whitespace-mode

plane text version follows:

A Exhibition Of Tech Geekers Incompetence: Emacs whitespace-mode

Xah Lee, 2009-08-13

Just wanted to express some frustration with whitespace-mode.

Emacs 23, just released, has this whitespace-mode feature. It renders
spaces, tabs, newlines characters with a visible glyph. This feature,
is in Microsoft Word since about 1992.

This feature is important in practical ways. For example, when you
work with “tab separated line” files (CSV) that's a common format for
importing/exporting address books or spreadsheets. It's also important
in whitespace-significant langs such as Python. Or, in text processing
when placement of space and tabs matters in the output.

All i wanted, is to make Space and Tab and Newline chars visible.

However, the emacs whitespace-mode does much more than that. It is
designed for tech geeking control freaks to tune every aspect of white
space in his source code. The mode is filled with bells and whistles.
It distinguishes tabs mixed with spaces, EOLs mixed with spaces, EOLs
at beginning of file, EOLs at end of file, run on spaces at end of
line, lines that has nothing to do with white spaces but is simply
longer than 80 chars, etc. Each of these is rendered with different
foreground, background, colors, so that they cannot possibly escape
the notices of control freaks.

By default, most of these are on, so that, when you turn on the mode,
most reasonable clean source code become this colorful rainbow
unreadable fuck.

I tried to tune it, with my 10 years of emacs of fucking 16 hours of
using per day, and 3 years of elisp coding experience. But, after a
hour, it's confusion hell sans avail.

O, that Alex idiot with his emacswiki, refused to lead emacswiki into
any readable state. All he can think about is my social skills. (See:
Problems of Emacswiki.)

What the fuck motherfuck. Hi tech geekers, coding freaks, social
science ignoramus fucks, basic economics illiterate FSF fucks, freedom
abusing selfish ideologists fucks, Richard Stallman propagandist fuck,
we-try-to-be-easy-to-use linuxer idioting fucks, FUCK U.

∑ http://xahlee.org/

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