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Re: Prefixed manual describe-function and api overview

From: João Távora
Subject: Re: Prefixed manual describe-function and api overview
Date: Thu, 11 Jun 2020 20:13:57 +0100

Hello Philippe,

[I take the liberty from answering to emacs-devel, since you
seem to be requesting that I weigh in on your work, which is

> I'm surprised not to hear from you on this. Maybe you missed it?
> IIRC you were the one pushing for me to implement it, maybe I misremember.

You don't.  I have variable amounts of energy to invest in Emacs
development, and I didn't think my input would be crucial here.
Sorry about that, and thank you for your work.

I read your email, but was discouraged from trying your program
since you made it depend on s.el and dash.el which are libraries
I don't use and steer clear of. Certainly with 120 lines of code you
can write it without s.el and dash.el, especially now that you've
supposedly become accustomed with Emacs's API's.

But I read the code.

You approach is completely different from what I imagined: I was
thinking of creating new sections in the manual itself, or creating
a whole new manual, without having to actually write the contents
for it.  It could be called the "Elisp API manual", or some better name.
One could visit that API manual from inside and from outside Emacs,
just as one does now with the normal Manual.  A minimal amount of
Elisp code would allow some C-h <key> function to take me there.

In other words, as you know, a manual in Emacs is extracted from the
Texinfo source  (.texi files) into various output formats.  I was thinking
about code that performs this extraction into a new output (a new manual,
or a new section in the existing Elisp manual) including all those formats.
Without needing to touch the (.texi) files themselves.  Maybe this could
be done with a special Texinfo macro, maybe redefining its built-in
@defun macro, which is what Emacs uses to introduce a function
definition.  That was my idea.

Hope this helps,
João Távora

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