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Re: customizing a variable named in Info

From: Luc Teirlinck
Subject: Re: customizing a variable named in Info
Date: Sun, 19 Oct 2003 10:12:20 -0500 (CDT)

Eli Zaretskii wrote:

   > Date: Sat, 18 Oct 2003 21:34:28 -0400
   > From: Peter S Galbraith <address@hidden>
   > It would be nice to have a way to identity an Emacs variable in texinfo
   > sources such that when Emacs Info renders the page it can make the
   > variable name clickable in order to customize it.

   I think this is a good idea, but it needs to be elaborated a bit in
   order to discuss its merits.

I have not yet thought of the following long enough really, but I just
want to point it out before people start to pursue possibly more
complex and less unifying avenues, that could require more work.

There would appear to be the possibility of using `help-make-xrefs',
which does something similar in *Help* buffers, stripped of its
*Help*-buffer specific aspects.  That would make the conventions for
Info the same as the ones for *Help* buffers, preventing both users
and Elisp programmers from getting confused by subtle and unnecessary
differences between both.  That would affect not only variables, but
also functions and, if preceded or followed by the word `face', also
faces.  Indeed, we are not just talking about access to customization,
but also information.  Moreover, faces are customizable too.  Note that
the making of hyperlinks in *Help* buffers has become somewhat more
conservative since yesterday evening.

Since all of this only makes sense for Info manuals dealing with
Elisp, this feature would only be activated by, say, a file local
variable or something similar.  It should not apply to all info files
by default, since for many of them it would make no sense.

   Or we could have makeinfo generate something special for a variable
   mentioned in a paragraph that has a @vindex entry before it.

Makes no sense unless we are talking about an _Elisp_ variable.
address@hidden' by no means guarantees this.  Even then, the variable
documentation might not be available unless the reader is reading Info
using Emacs.

   > I know I can put point on the string, do `C-h v' and then click on
   > customize, but such a feature would make customizable variables stand
   > out and the documentation would therefore render the information in a
   > more efficient way (specially for new users).

   Perhaps some shorter procedure, like a key binding for "customize the
   variable at point", would do?

I believe that Peter wants the variable to "stand out better", which
the `help-make-xrefs' derivative would do by underlining.



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