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Re: [O] Proposal for new document-level syntax

From: Gustav Wikström
Subject: Re: [O] Proposal for new document-level syntax
Date: Sat, 1 Jun 2019 23:08:52 +0000

Hi Nicolas,

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Nicolas Goaziou <address@hidden>
> Sent: den 1 juni 2019 23:01
> To: Gustav Wikström <address@hidden>
> Cc: address@hidden
> Subject: Re: Proposal for new document-level syntax
> I only skimmed over your proposal, as I don't have much time. I'm sorry
> if you answered this already, but I don't understand how what you
> suggest would differ from regular keywords.

No worries. I think I explained but it can be further detailed. What I
mean is that any property you can think of should be possible to add
to a document as a keyword with the syntax:

#+{PROPERTY}: {Value}

But only at the beginning of a file, before any other content. The
only reason for defining properties like that is for them to be
visible outside of the property drawer. I'm thinking mostly of
=#+TITLE= and similar keywords.

I'd like to depricate =#+PROPERTY:= since it breaks the outline
hierarchy and doens't follow the convention for how properties are
defined inside headlines. Removing the "old" way of defining
properties for the whole buffer will make property-syntax defined the
same for documents and headlines. With the slight extention of
allowing arbitrary keywords to stand for properties at the beginning
of the buffer. Note that we already have "document property keywords"
in org-mode. Less limited since they're not positionally contained.
And only for a limited set of keywords; the "export keywords". (See
[[info:org#Export Settings]]) 

The proposal has a side-effect of reducing the complexity for
keywords.[fn:1] I did an evaluation of available keywords in org-mode
today by going through the documentation. And there are *lots* of uses
for keywords today. Making keywords easier to use, by removing the
need for them in many cases, hopefully will help future org-moders.

[fn:1] All keywords that have outline property equivalences can be
deprecated and later removed since we're introducing a property drawer
on the document level. All keywords that are meant for customizations
that don't have an outline property equivalent can be *moved* into the
setting drawer. That only leaves keywords that have real meaning in
the outline. =#+NAME=, =#+TOC=, =#+INCLUDE=, for example.

> As a reminder:
> - you can create, and support, as many keywords as you want;
> - keywords all operate at the "document-level";
> - keywords can be located anywhere in the document.
> I think Org keywords already provide everything you need. If they
> don't, I would suggest to improve them instead of creating something
> else.

In my opinion property drawers is the improvement which in time will 
make the existing property-keyword redundant.

With regards,

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