Welcome. I use Emacs. I love Emacs. I resisted for several years and hung on to vi and (horrors: M$ Word). In my striving to be M$ free I adopted Emacs because of its power and flexibility.
I am also currently interested in other lisp based systems such as AutoCAD. See: AutoLispMode.
I created the first version of HtmlOutline.
I have a web page. I also worked on a masters thesis in computer science but the idea was far too ambitious and I never finished, though I still think about it from time to time. I also ran a couple of small companies: a flower store and a photography shop specializing spherical and high dynamic range work. Neither made much money, but they were good experiences and taught me an enormous amount about human relations and economics. Currently I’m finishing up a masters in Architecture (finally!)
My adoption of Emacs has been driven by my extensive personal outlined documents. Originally created in M$ Word, they took extensive advantage of Word’s outline view and the ability to collapse, promote, demote, and shift blocks up and down in the outline. I had not even heard of UNIX at the time, let alone Emacs, and the possibility of large scale networks only existed in the domain of the cinema. At the time I believe it was Word 6, and the key bindings for the outlining features were dreadful. I quickly learned how to fix them and created much more sensible ones. When Word 7, or 98 or whatever it was, was released, I was happy to find that they had adopted (almost entirely) as default my binding set. Very sensible of them.
];) Then the realities of Word set it. Read: data loss. It would crash and trash my work. I had backups but reconstructing the data was time consuming and annoying. Switching to using Word under MacOS didn’t help. I was on a hunt for a new word processor.
WordPerfect didn’t support an outline view where in blocks could be hidden and reveled through collapsing. Neither did the MacWrite series. Perhaps there had been another program which would have worked but I didn’t have the $$$ to buy them all for my search. I trudged along with my docs in word even while I learned about unix, vi, the Internet, and finally linux. One year at comdex I searched up the StarOffice booth, which was still a commercial product at the time, and asked if they had or were developing such functionality. They replied that they were not developing outline view and outline manipulation features as M$ Office .doc compatibility was a higher priority at the time. Even today, the Open Office 3.2 outlining functions are not up to the standard of MSWord6.
Meanwhile I had suffered from pain in my arms from mousing and keyboarding. I found that switching to the dvorak key layout helped a great deal and eliminated almost all of my symptoms. I had also taken a compiler class where we used Scheme and emacs to construct a pascal parser. That was an exceptional class and introduced me to the power of lisp. But it also showed me the complexity of Emacs and the insult to Usability that the default Emacs key bindings are. So things sat as they were for several years getting dusty as I no longer wanted to risk the use of word.
Several years later after turning a gnu leaf, getting married, starting a small company, and most importantly: being exposed to emacs once again through friends, I decided it was time to give the one true editor another go. I knew I would have to create a relatively complex .emacs file to give it some slightly more sane key bindings, and to provide some of the vim functions I couldn’t live without. I had just previously put in a couple weeks trying to figure out how to customize vim sufficiently to get the folding mechanism to do what I needed, but had come up short of success. I spent another couple weeks brushing up on my elisp and learning the basic ropes. After a third week I had things working sufficiently to do the basics of what I wanted.
Hardly am I finished, but then I ask for quite a bit. I’m hoping to unify the different .emacs files I use for OSX, macOS9, linux, windows, and various terminals so that everything runs from my user dir on the server and I get what I want regardless of which machine I start emacs on. I’m not there yet, but things are getting better. The keys are largest sticky bit these days, as the various systems pass some key combinations and not others.
If you need to get a hold of me send a message to email@example.com
When on irc I go by ciradrak.
Hello. I enjoyed the drawn figures in your thesis proposal dated May 2005. Good luck writing “Visual Bash Studio”. Grin. – AaronHawley
Thanks! I just hope that I can bring the whole thing to some kind of meaningful conclusion. – SamGeorge