Re: Notmuch Emacs 0.31.2 documentation and keybinding suggestions

Subject: Re: Notmuch Emacs 0.31.2 documentation and keybinding suggestions

Date: Sun, 10 Oct 2021 22:15:54 -0300

To: Jorge P. de Morais Neto,

Cc: Tomi Ollila

From: David Bremner

"Jorge P. de Morais Neto" <> writes:

> Hi.  I would like to report the following documentation and keybinding
> imperfections:
> The info page
> [[ key bindings]] says that
> <backspace> moves to the previous widget, but that key is actually bound
> to `delete-backward-char'.

Apparently Tomi "corrected" <backtab> to <backspace> in

> To move to the previous widget I use <C-M-i>
> or <S-iso-lefttab>.

On the other hand, the keybinding in the code is to "C-<tab>", which
explains the above. To really be <backtab>, it should be S-tab.

> And why does <S-iso-lefttab> move backward but
> <S-C-i> (which ought to be equivalent to <S-iso-lefttab>, no?) moves forward?

You'd think they'd be equivalent, but actually they are not. You can use
C-h k to test, even in a GUI/X11 emacs.

> Also, it seems that <SPC> moves forward and <DEL> moves backward, but
> <S-SPC> does nothing useful.  For consistency with Emacs Info Mode,
> Emacs View Mode, and some other applications such as Firefox, perhaps
> <S-SPC> should move backward too.

I note that S-SPC is not accesible in terminals. But if there's
concensus that is is useful I don't mind adding it.

> The introduction of help buffer for Notmuch-Show (reached by hitting
> <?>) describes the <SPC> command without mentioning that it can archive
> the thread; only in <SPC> specific description (which does not fit in
> the same window; one has to scroll) does it mention the archiving
> behavior.  I believe the archiving behavior should also be mentioned in
> the introduction, lest the user unwittingly archive a thread she wasn't
> supposed to.

I personally don't think archiving is that destructive, if someone wants
to improve this wording, it is the docstring for notmuch-show-mode

> Also, the description for <u> is empty (this also happens
> in the help buffer for Notmuch-Hello).

Yes, that's a bug as the function "notmuch-unthreaded" lacks a
docstring. I think the original author of that code doesn't use emacs
anymore, so someone else is welcome to contribute one.

> In the same help buffer, the description of <c ?> says "Show help for a
> subkeymap."  Would it not be better to drop the "a", leaving "Show help
> for subkeymap." ?

This is the docstring for notmuch-subkeymap-help. In that context I
think it's better with the "a".

> Finally, the binding for <C-tab> in Notmuch-Show and Notmuch-Hello
> inconveniently clobbers the tab-bar-mode binding for that key.  Should
> not Notmuch be content with <C-M-i>/<ESC tab>/<S-iso-lefttab> (and
> possibly <S-C-i>) and leave <C-Tab> alone?

Notmuch has used the binding since 2010 (almost 10 years before
tab-bar-mode existed), so people might be used to it; on other hand it
does seem redundant since the binding S-tab is also there. I'm not a
very serious user of notmuch-hello mode, and I don't use tab-bar-mode at
all, so I'd welcome feedback from other people about how attached they
are to C-tab.

notmuch mailing list --
To unsubscribe send an email to