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It is curious to track the path by which the word `argument' came to have two different meanings, one in mathematics and the other in everyday English. According to the Oxford English Dictionary, the word derives from the Latin for `to make clear, prove'; thus it came to mean, by one thread of derivation, `the evidence offered as proof', which is to say, `the information offered', which led to its meaning in Lisp. But in the other thread of derivation, it came to mean `to assert in a manner against which others may make counter assertions', which led to the meaning of the word as a disputation. (Note here that the English word has two different definitions attached to it at the same time. By contrast, in Emacs Lisp, a symbol cannot have two different function definitions at the same time.)
%s to print a number. It is non-specific.
prints only the part of a number left of a decimal point, and not
anything that is not a number.
Actually, by default, if the buffer from which you
just switched is visible to you in another window,
will choose the most recent buffer that you cannot see; this is a
subtlety that I often forget.
rather, to save typing, you probably typed just part of the name, such
*sc, and then pressed your TAB key to cause it to
expand to the full name; and then typed your RET key.
Remember, this expression will move you to your most recent other buffer that you cannot see. If you really want to go to your most recently selected buffer, even if you can still see it, you need to evaluate the following more complex expression:
(switch-to-buffer (other-buffer (current-buffer) t))
In this case, the first argument to
other-buffer tells it which
buffer to skip--the current one--and the second argument tells
other-buffer it is OK to switch to a visible buffer.
In regular use,
switch-to-buffer takes you to an invisible
window since you would most likely use C-x o (
to go to another visible buffer.
Actually, you can
cons an element to an atom to produce a dotted pair. Dotted
pairs are not discussed here; see section `Dotted Pair Notation' in The GNU Emacs Lisp Reference Manual.
More precisely, and requiring more expert knowledge to understand, the two integers are of type `Lisp_Object', which can also be a C union instead of an integer type.
You can write
recursive functions to be frugal or wasteful of mental or computer
resources; as it happens, methods that people find easy--that are
frugal of `mental resources'---sometimes use considerable computer
resources. Emacs was designed to run on machines that we now consider
limited and its default settings are conservative. You may want to
increase the values of
max-lisp-eval-depth. In my `.emacs' file, I set them to
15 and 30 times their default value.
The phrase tail recursive is used to describe such a process, one that uses `constant space'.
jargon is mildly confusing:
triangle-recursive-helper uses a
process that is iterative in a procedure that is recursive. The
process is called iterative because the computer need only record the
procedure is recursive because the function `calls itself'. On the
other hand, both the process and the procedure used by
triangle-recursively are called recursive. The word
`recursive' has different meanings in the two contexts.
You may also add `.el' to `~/.emacs' and call it a `~/.emacs.el' file. In the past, you were forbidden to type the extra keystrokes that the name `~/.emacs.el' requires, but now you may. The new format is consistent with the Emacs Lisp file naming conventions; the old format saves typing.
When I start instances of Emacs that do not load my `.emacs' file or any site file, I also turn off blinking:
emacs -q --no-site-file -eval '(blink-cursor-mode nil)'
I occasionally run more modern window managers, such as Sawfish with GNOME, Enlightenment, SCWM, or KDE; in those cases, I often specify an image rather than a plain color.