a look at the browser scene & emacs

Xah Lee xahlee at gmail.com
Fri Feb 27 01:22:57 CET 2009

On Feb 26, 1:59 am, Tassilo Horn <tass... at member.fsf.org> wrote:
> Xah Lee <xah... at gmail.com> writes:
> Hi Xah,
> > is the suggestion of using modern standard shortcut set of X C V for
> > Cut, Copy, Paste, of which Linux uses, means it is turning emacs to a
> > fancy Notepad clone?
> The functionality stays the same, but IMO it would confuse most users.
> Killing is not cutting, yanking is not pasting.  The whole concepts
> (kill-ring vs. simple copy&paste) are much different.

emacs's killing/yaning/kill-ring is basically the same idea as copy/

Basically, emacs's pasteboard is just a extended version, such that it
keeps a record of previous copied contents. To users, effectively,
this means you can do paste-previous. That's all there is to it.

So, it's brainless to make emacs intuitive to people and adopt modern
UI standards. Basically, copy, cut, paste, is all the same, except in
emacs you have also paste previous.

> > Is fixing emacs's confusing undo and no redo, that is periodically
> > bitched by programer in blogs, considered making emacs into a Notepad
> > clone?
> It's much more advanced than the usual sequential undo, but I admit that
> it can get confusing sometimes.  So instead of dropping it I'd prefer to
> think about a better UI for it.
> > Is the suggestion for a statistics based ergonomic keybinding design
> > that are more faster to execute, easier on the fingers, and easier to
> > remember, mean it is turning emacs to a fancy notepad clone?
> Users use different commands and your bindings may be better for you on
> your querty keyboard, but I'm sure they're not on my German Dvorak Type
> II keyboard.

If your are on a special keyboard, you are on your own.

The ergonomic keybinding

• Ergoemacs Keybindings

plays well with modern UI in Windows, Mac, Linux. It improves emacs
keybinding, but also support standard shortcut sets. In no way, it
loses any emacs advantage, while, it makes emacs compatible and
intuitive for vast majority of computer users, and improve efficiency
for those heavy touch typists and programers who are into the concept
of not leaving hands off the keyboard.

> > is the suggestion of getting rid of *scratch* buffer, and introduce a
> > command “New” with shortcut Ctrl+n, that creates new buffer anytime
> > anywhere, which lets user create multiple scratch buffers defaulting
> > to any mode and compatible for the rest of Linux's shortcuts, means it
> > is a fancy Microsoft Notepad?
> Such a easy key like C-n is much too valuable for such a rarely used
> command.  C-x b foobar RET is ok, isn't it?

This issues is discussed before in some hundred or 2 hundred thread in

the proposal in detail is here:

• Suggestions on Emacs's Scratch Buffer

In no way it sacrifices emacs operational efficiency. The proposal is
careful thought out, so that in not only doesn't sacrifice emacs
operational efficient in any possible way, but improve it, yet
meanwhile makes it compatible with modern UI and intuitive to the

As for the Ctrl+n for New, it must be used in conjunction with the
ergonomic keybinding set mentioned above.

In the end, users can intuitive press Ctrl+n for creating a new file,
one or multiple of it, can be used as elisp *scratch*, and can be set
to default to any major mode, and can be saved by simply pressing Ctrl
+s, and it will ask if user wants to save instead of like emacs
*scratch* it risk losing data.

> > is the suggestion of changing notation from C- and M- to Ctrl+ and Alt
> > +, such that it reflects the lable on the keyboard, and Richard
> > Stallman agrees may be a good idea, means it's Notepad?
> Nope, but I'm not sure if it's possible for emacs to get the right key.
> Here, M is Alt, but Ctrl is indeed on the CapsLock key...
> And it makes key sequences much longer to write with little or no
> benefit.

What the fuck r u talking about?? Really, what the fuck are you
talking about? Give concrete, specific point please.

As for the CapsLock for Control, it's a industry myth. For detail,

• Why You Should Not Swap Caps Lock With Control

> > is the suggestion of supporting html mail, and interface to gmail out
> > of the box, means it's becoming Microsoft Notepad?
> Definitively not.  AFAIK Gnus can handle gmail accounts quite well.

Quite well my ass.

Thank you for your feedback. I think it would be nice if you do some
research on each particular issue. I can't spend my time to write
detailed things to teach every poster. And i often have to repeat
multiple times of the same issue. For example of a research, suppose
you find my claim about Ctrl and Caps Lock switch incredible. Then,
you can do research on this subject. Spending 1 hour on it, or days.
You can go to library to research ergonomics, or ask professors, or
try to hire experts for opinion, or set out experiments and test out
hypothesis etc. For example, you can write a program to statistically
log your keystroke, timing, etc. You can also set out key sequences
set, A, and B, and type them for one hour each, to see which is
causing your hand pain, etc.

The above is just beginner suggestions, on one particular example of
contention. On each and every issue, you can start a research.

Btw, you are prob a typical tech geekers, where you don't understand
nothing about research or social sciences. One short concrete advice i
can give about your situation when researching, is not based on your
views on slashdot, or the tech geeking blogs, or “my emacs buddies did
this or that” type of thinking. Another concrete advices is that
whatever you did for the research, must cost you. If it came easily
without much cost, chances are, it's bullshit in your head. What dose
cost mean? Ok, it means your time, for example. Are you, willing, to
put aside say 10 hours of your time, on a issue mentioned here?
Alternatively, say, are you willing, to spend $100 USD for research on
particular issue we are debating here? For example, the money can be
used to pay professional services that does research for you. It's
probably peanuts and most such research services won't take. But it's
a start on thinking. You can spend it on someone who are known expert
for example. As a quick example, say you disbelieve one of my claim
about ergonomics, then you can spend the $100 USD to say ask some
known ergonomics expert to dinner or buy him beer, and ask about his

I typed the above as fast as i can, just to give you some ideas. There
are too many issues, aspects, technical, social, concrete,
philosophical, that i can cover, and have written a lot in the past
years. I can't repeat them all here, and frankly i discussed only a
small part. But i hope you have some basic ideas about the issue.

Love & knowledge,

∑ http://xahlee.org/

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