Linux and FOSS Enthusiast. I do the Dev and the Ops and sometimes both at once.

Defying your keyboard with Elisp

The other day I had the idea to do what I suspect, is a weird thing. I wanted to bind keys to other key’s characters in Emacs. This led me on an interesting journey through the Emacs source code until I finally found a solution. But Why I’m a software developer, so I hit a lot of keys. One of the reasons I love Emacs (+evil) is that it allows me to minimize the amount of keys I need to press to complete common actions throughout the day. I have hand problems (not related to Emacs, I swear). This means I sometimes go to extreme lengths to remove key presses for common actions, especially those involving pinky usage. It recently occurred to me that, during my day, I type *, (, ) and " far more often than their “unshifted” counterparts, or at least I do when typing code or documentation.

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Why Use Emacs?

The Beginning of an Obsession Anyone who has been in my vicinity for than 5 minutes will know that I LOVE Emacs. More than any man should reasonably love any program, let alone a programm from the 70’s. I spend countless hours tweaking my config (and yes I use Spacemacs, which is still customizable), and I’m a frequent attendee of New York City Emacs. The thing that I love most about it is how customizable and programmable it is. Since, I spend most of my day interacting with text on a computer having a platform for automating text interaction allows me to remove a lot of pain from my day. Unfortunately many people I preach to don’t quite understand how this can be a benefit. Today, I’m going to document a use case where the power of Emacs saved me hours of programming.

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