Searching for "finally got my Emacs setup just how I like it" yields excellent results.


(An old Google Japan Apr 1 gag.)

Other fine specimens include:


And these bitches:
Of course I grew up with:

Previously, previously, previously, previously.

Tags: , , , , , ,

24 Responses:

  1. J. Peterson says:

    I've often wondered what the Control-meta-super-hyper-shift-greek Emacs prefix does.

    • jwz says:

      Having more chording keys than just Shift, Control and Alt was legitimately useful. But yes, there were also Easter eggs...

  2. Steve Allen says:

    We are in a post-keyboard world we need artistic ways to express that
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KUof9o0SYfs

  3. nikita says:

    Symbolics keyboard had an upvote key?

    • jwz says:

      36 bit words with 32 bits data and 4 bits of tag and it's the upthumb that blows your mind? Man, people don't even realize how advanced these systems were. We were thumbing left, right, meta and super, thumbing in directions you can't even point to with non-Emacs fingers and not even thinking about it. Our thumbs were boxed in sys::areas you can't even refcount.

      • nikita says:

        (atomp veritas-numquam-perit)

        • jwz says:

          From: igb@fulcrum.bt.co.uk (Ian G Batten)
          Subject: Re: Cryptic comments
          Date: 02 Feb 90 04:39:31 PST

          As barmar confirmed, many of the comments in Multics' Emacs by Bernie Greenberg were in Latin. Most of the code was as well:

                (buffer-est-delenda-p ...)

          and all the fenestra code. Plus jeter-les-gazongas!

          • nikita says:

            I put the mandatory "hodie natus est radici frater" message in every directory-management system I implemented. But the veritas-numquam-perit is much older than Multics.

  4. Spook says:

    Nonsense. One's emacs setup is never finished.

  5. Erbo says:

    I've long wanted to have the equivalent of the Space Cadet Keyboard for my personal workstation, on the grounds that anybody other than me who sits at my desk needs to be intimidated to hell and gone. I couldn't find one, and I wound up settling for the Logitech G19, which has extra function keys, programmable-color backlighting, and its own built-in LCD screen.

    I also used to have an 18-button mouse on my system (the Warmouse Meta) for the same reason...but the darn thing wound up being too fragile for heavy use.

    • jwz says:

      For many years, I had Caps Lock mapped to Delete. Hilarity ensued.

      Even when I gave that up, I had [{ and }] mapped to [( and )] as is right and proper. I put { and } on F10 and F11.

      • enkiv2 says:

        A coworker had Caps Lock and Escape swapped. That was for his VIM setup.

        Of course, when other people had to use his machine temporarily, this caused problems.

    • MattyJ says:

      I just switched to Dvorak a long time ago and touch-type leaving the qwerty layout physically intact. Great fun when IT claims it needs to do something to your computer. Even greater fun when you accidentally hit the Dvorak/qwerty toggle and don't notice until you're done typing that email while not looking at the screen, and maybe even sending it.

      • Ben says:

        I used Dvorak in college, and switched back when I got a laptop with keys that couldn't be rearranged. I could touch type Dvorak and Qwerty, but the occasional visual interference of the wrong one screwed me up.

        I should redo another keyboard in Dvorak and see if I can still type on it a decade later.

        Regarding the toggle, I was playing a game on a computer in Bangkok and there's some button or keypress combo that would switch it from qwerty to some local layout. I'd suddenly find that I couldn't type messages to teammates. I never did figure out what the toggle was.

    • Michael says:

      I have a g15 and I have had endless problems getting the extra keys working in Linux any tips?

  6. MichaelMalus says:

    You're all barking up the wrong tree, methinks. Clearly, using emacs requires a more elevated frame of mind, and a keyboard to match the experience.

  7. cfs says:


    I wonder if there are bindings for the 19 forbidden keys in the boƮte diabolique?

  8. Some time last millennium a friend's terminal broke so I went to Mike Quinn Electronics at the Oakland Airport to see if I could get her a nice cheap replacement. All the way in the back I found a pile of a few dozen cute little terminals. Only problem: they had an AIDS key. I got one anyway.

  9. T Hudson says:

    I especially like that there are un-shifted parentheses next to the P in addition to the normal shifted ones over 9 and 0, for when you're really deep into writing LISP.

    If you do find one of the Symbolics keyboards, they are easy to convert to USB. Some keys are not present, so I've mapped things like Control-Alt-Delete to the Hyper-Control-Function combo, which would be used on a real LISP Machine to reset the FEP.

    • Chris Hanson says:

      Don't commit such heresies. Symbolics keyboards should be used with Symbolics consoles connected to Symbolics workstations. They're all rare enough that keyboard poachers can seriously harm the ecosystem.