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Re: Emacs with Mathematica

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  • Subject: [mg116568] Re: Emacs with Mathematica
  • From: David Bailey <dave at>
  • Date: Sun, 20 Feb 2011 05:25:15 -0500 (EST)
  • References: <ijlehe$r34$>

On 18/02/2011 09:35, Just A Stranger wrote:
> I've been finding the notebook interface terribly lacking for basic text
> editing. A lot of mouse moving, not a whole lot of keyboard combinations
> to move the cursor and highlighting.
> I've found two emacs mathematica mode packages. Anyone ever used these?
> Had any trouble with them? (I'm not too concerned with pretty-print, so
> that is not an issue.)
>    Is the notebook interface really lacking in program editing power, or
> am I missing something? Have any of you found any better solutions than
> resorting to some old emacs package last updated in 2005?
> Thanks :)
I like to put code into .m files, because these seem to edit more 
conveniently than .nb files - in particular, the text does not move 
about as you add brackets!

Using an external text editor is only really feasible for .m files, but 
even there, you have the problem that a lot of Mathematica characters 
appear in the form \[Alpha]. Depending on what you are doing, this can 
be a real pain!

While the built-in editor may not have all the features of your 
favourite text editor, it has one feature that I find invaluable. 
Starting from the cursor position, you can progressively expand the 
selection to successively larger expressions by pressing Control-. (or 
the equivalent in non-Windows environments). This lets you pick out a 
whole expression taking care of operator precedence and bracket 
counting. You can also do this with multiple fast mouse clicks.

David Bailey

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