Re: elastic tabstops implemented for GTK

On Wed, Aug 29, 2007 at 01:38:36PM +0200, Nick Gravgaard wrote:
> The problem is that indenting is already broken regardless of whether
> you use tabs or spaces. Tabs are broken because if you don't get the
> size right things won't line up ("appear all wrong"), and spaces are
> broken because you're forcing everyone to use your indentation size.

Please explain how spaces break compatibility with other
editors (the original objection).

Spaces are not broken.  Granted, you get one particular
indentation with spaces, but it is unambiguous and everyone
can display this particular style right.  The amount of
indentation is a single coding style issue of many.  Does it
worth the ado if the rest is still present (`enforced' in
your terms)?

In addition, the most problematic part of identation is
figuring out what to do with tabs -- incidentally the part
you seem to intend to make *much harder*.

> My approach fixes these problems.

To me it looks like an attempt to force everyone to use
gedit (or whatever chosen editor) to display the text.

Also please explain how another possible interpretation of
tabs fixes anything instead of creating more mess.

> If you look at the plugin I made for gedit (watch the video at the
> link I mentioned above) you can see that it is possible to convert
> between elastic tabstops and spaces. You lose some of the advantages
> this way (you can't manipulate the files using tools like sed and
> still have everything line up when you load it in the editor), but can
> work on projects that mandate the use of spaces for
> indenting/alignment.

Manipluating the text with sed is a cool idea, but I guess
most people would trade it for the ability to display the
text as intended (which can be ensured only by expanding to

The editor can present the text any way it wishes and let
the user do any transforms on it.  No problem with this.
But changing the storage format and expecting everyone else
to adapt?  Have Microsoft arrived here?


P.S.: I should probably welcome this after all.  Each new
misuse of tabs is a point against using them at all.


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