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Re: Is vim really fully unicoded?

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  • Tony Mechelynck
    ... col() gives a one-based byte ordinal. [] takes a zero-based argument. I stand by what I said. ... OK, I didn t think of virtual editing, nor even, it
    Message 1 of 13 , Jan 6, 2009
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      On 07/01/09 00:39, Matt Wozniski wrote:
      > On Tue, Jan 6, 2009 at 6:10 PM, Tony Mechelynck wrote:
      >> On 06/01/09 12:31, anhnmncb wrote:
      >>> Hi, list, as title, if so, why can't many functions
      >>> still handle correctly with unicode? For example the func:
      >>>
      >>> getline('.')[col('.')-1]
      >>>
      >>> Can't return a charactor outside the range of ascii.
      >>>
      >> because string[index] returns a byte value, not a character value: see
      >> ":help expr8".
      >
      > *Nod*
      >
      >> If the character at the cursor is> U+007F, you'll get
      >> the first byte (in the range 0xC0-0xFD, or in practice in the range
      >> 0xC0-0xF4) of its UTF-8 representation.
      >
      > No, you could get some byte of some entirely different character. Ie,
      > on a line with two 2-byte characters, getline('.')[col('.')-1] on the
      > second character would return the 2nd byte of the first character.

      col() gives a one-based byte ordinal. [] takes a zero-based argument. I
      stand by what I said.

      >
      >> The _character_ at the cursor is obtained as follows:
      >> let i0 = byteidx(getline('.'), virtcol('.') - 1)
      >> let i1 = byteidx(getline('.'), virtcol('.'))
      >> let character = strpart(getline('.'), i0, i1 - 10)
      >
      > Using virtcol() there seems broken... what if you're in the middle of
      > a tab, for example, with virtualedit=all?
      >
      > :echo join(split("áéíóú", '\zs')[1:3], '')

      OK, I didn't think of virtual editing, nor even, it seems, of
      multi-column characters such as tabs and fullwidth CJK. However, [1:3]
      wouldn't work because the idea is that we're in a script, we don't know
      that we're in the 1st, 2nd or 3rd column, just that we want "whatever is
      at the cursor". I might do it with

      function CursorChar()
      normal yl
      return @@
      endfunction

      >
      > is how I would do it... but, is there any real reason why indexing
      > into a string *should* be byte oriented instead of character oriented,
      > apart from backwards compatibility? It seems drastically less easy to
      > use the thing that more people want to use more of the time; and in
      > fact some of the snippets in the vim help (like the example given at
      > :help expr-8) won't work on multibyte lines given the way that string
      > indexing works now. It seems like a place where the cost of losing
      > backwards compatibility might be outweighed by the cost of keeping
      > things the way they are...
      >
      > ~Matt

      Changing an existing construct from byte-oriented to
      multibyte-character-oriented would probably break a lot of existing
      scripts. I don't believe Bram would ever accept that.

      Best regards,
      Tony.
      --
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      of being able to turn out, after innumerable punching, an infinite
      series of incomprehensive answers calculated with micrometric
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      inconclusive documents and carried out on instruments of problematical
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    • Yue Wu
      ... Hmm, I think I got the point. btw, I tested your func on a line with 测试 (test) let i0 = byteidx(getline( . ), virtcol( . ) - 1) let i1 =
      Message 2 of 13 , Jan 6, 2009
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        On Wed, 07 Jan 2009 08:25:35 +0800, Tony Mechelynck wrote:

        >
        > On 07/01/09 00:39, Matt Wozniski wrote:
        >> On Tue, Jan 6, 2009 at 6:10 PM, Tony Mechelynck wrote:
        >>> On 06/01/09 12:31, anhnmncb wrote:
        >>>> Hi, list, as title, if so, why can't many functions
        >>>> still handle correctly with unicode? For example the func:
        >>>>
        >>>> getline('.')[col('.')-1]
        >>>>
        >>>> Can't return a charactor outside the range of ascii.
        >>>>
        >>> because string[index] returns a byte value, not a character value: see
        >>> ":help expr8".
        >>
        >> *Nod*
        >>
        >>> If the character at the cursor is> U+007F, you'll get
        >>> the first byte (in the range 0xC0-0xFD, or in practice in the range
        >>> 0xC0-0xF4) of its UTF-8 representation.
        >>
        >> No, you could get some byte of some entirely different character. Ie,
        >> on a line with two 2-byte characters, getline('.')[col('.')-1] on the
        >> second character would return the 2nd byte of the first character.
        >
        > col() gives a one-based byte ordinal. [] takes a zero-based argument. I
        > stand by what I said.
        >
        >>
        >>> The _character_ at the cursor is obtained as follows:
        >>> let i0 = byteidx(getline('.'), virtcol('.') - 1)
        >>> let i1 = byteidx(getline('.'), virtcol('.'))
        >>> let character = strpart(getline('.'), i0, i1 - 10)
        >>
        >> Using virtcol() there seems broken... what if you're in the middle of
        >> a tab, for example, with virtualedit=all?
        >>
        >> :echo join(split("áéíóú", '\zs')[1:3], '')
        >
        > OK, I didn't think of virtual editing, nor even, it seems, of
        > multi-column characters such as tabs and fullwidth CJK. However, [1:3]
        > wouldn't work because the idea is that we're in a script, we don't know
        > that we're in the 1st, 2nd or 3rd column, just that we want "whatever is
        > at the cursor". I might do it with
        >
        > function CursorChar()
        > normal yl
        > return @@
        > endfunction
        >
        >>
        >> is how I would do it... but, is there any real reason why indexing
        >> into a string *should* be byte oriented instead of character oriented,
        >> apart from backwards compatibility? It seems drastically less easy to
        >> use the thing that more people want to use more of the time; and in
        >> fact some of the snippets in the vim help (like the example given at
        >> :help expr-8) won't work on multibyte lines given the way that string
        >> indexing works now. It seems like a place where the cost of losing
        >> backwards compatibility might be outweighed by the cost of keeping
        >> things the way they are...
        >>
        >> ~Matt
        >
        > Changing an existing construct from byte-oriented to
        > multibyte-character-oriented would probably break a lot of existing
        > scripts. I don't believe Bram would ever accept that.
        >
        > Best regards,
        > Tony.

        Hmm, I think I got the point.

        btw, I tested your func on a line with "测试"(test)

        let i0 = byteidx(getline('.'), virtcol('.') - 1)
        let i1 = byteidx(getline('.'), virtcol('.'))
        let character = strpart(getline('.'), i0, i1 - 10)

        Then echo character got nothing.

        --
        Regards,
        Van.

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      • Matt Wozniski
        On 1/6/09, Tony Mechelynck wrote: On 07/01/09 00:39, Matt Wozniski wrote: On Tue, Jan 6, 2009 at 6:10 PM, Tony Mechelynck wrote: On 06/01/09
        Message 3 of 13 , Jan 6, 2009
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          On 1/6/09, Tony Mechelynck wrote:
          >
          > On 07/01/09 00:39, Matt Wozniski wrote:
          > > On Tue, Jan 6, 2009 at 6:10 PM, Tony Mechelynck wrote:
          > >> On 06/01/09 12:31, anhnmncb wrote:
          > >>> Hi, list, as title, if so, why can't many functions
          > >>> still handle correctly with unicode? For example the func:
          > >>>
          > >>> getline('.')[col('.')-1]
          > >>>
          > >>> Can't return a charactor outside the range of ascii.
          > >>>
          > >> because string[index] returns a byte value, not a character value: see
          > >> ":help expr8".
          > >
          > > *Nod*
          > >
          > >> If the character at the cursor is> U+007F, you'll get
          > >> the first byte (in the range 0xC0-0xFD, or in practice in the range
          > >> 0xC0-0xF4) of its UTF-8 representation.
          > >
          > > No, you could get some byte of some entirely different character. Ie,
          > > on a line with two 2-byte characters, getline('.')[col('.')-1] on the
          > > second character would return the 2nd byte of the first character.
          >
          > col() gives a one-based byte ordinal. [] takes a zero-based argument. I
          > stand by what I said.

          Ooh, you're right - I forgot col() returned a byte index, and not the
          column as its name would imply...

          > >> The _character_ at the cursor is obtained as follows:
          > >> let i0 = byteidx(getline('.'), virtcol('.') - 1)
          > >> let i1 = byteidx(getline('.'), virtcol('.'))
          > >> let character = strpart(getline('.'), i0, i1 - 10)
          > >
          > > Using virtcol() there seems broken... what if you're in the middle of
          > > a tab, for example, with virtualedit=all?
          > >
          > > :echo join(split("áéíóú", '\zs')[1:3], '')
          >
          > OK, I didn't think of virtual editing, nor even, it seems, of
          > multi-column characters such as tabs and fullwidth CJK. However, [1:3]
          > wouldn't work because the idea is that we're in a script, we don't know
          > that we're in the 1st, 2nd or 3rd column, just that we want "whatever is
          > at the cursor". I might do it with
          >
          > function CursorChar()
          > normal yl
          > return @@
          > endfunction

          echo matchstr(getline('.'), '\%' . col('.') . 'c.')

          does the same thing without clobbering the unnamed register...
          slightly more elegant, imho.

          > > is how I would do it... but, is there any real reason why indexing
          > > into a string *should* be byte oriented instead of character oriented,
          > > apart from backwards compatibility? It seems drastically less easy to
          > > use the thing that more people want to use more of the time; and in
          > > fact some of the snippets in the vim help (like the example given at
          > > :help expr-8) won't work on multibyte lines given the way that string
          > > indexing works now. It seems like a place where the cost of losing
          > > backwards compatibility might be outweighed by the cost of keeping
          > > things the way they are...
          >
          > Changing an existing construct from byte-oriented to
          > multibyte-character-oriented would probably break a lot of existing
          > scripts. I don't believe Bram would ever accept that.

          But sometimes, breaking things is required to make progress. The fact
          that we're having a conversation with both of us suggesting (fairly
          complicated) things that haven't worked is a perfect proof for the
          fact that the current system is counterintuitive and hard to use...

          ~Matt

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        • Tony Mechelynck
          ... Again, col( . ) is a byte index, not a column. What about virtcol( . ) instead? To avoid clobbering @@ I could save/restore it. ... That s no reason for
          Message 4 of 13 , Jan 6, 2009
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            On 07/01/09 02:14, Matt Wozniski wrote:
            > On 1/6/09, Tony Mechelynck wrote:
            >> On 07/01/09 00:39, Matt Wozniski wrote:
            >> > On Tue, Jan 6, 2009 at 6:10 PM, Tony Mechelynck wrote:
            >> >> On 06/01/09 12:31, anhnmncb wrote:
            >> >>> Hi, list, as title, if so, why can't many functions
            >> >>> still handle correctly with unicode? For example the func:
            >> >>>
            >> >>> getline('.')[col('.')-1]
            >> >>>
            >> >>> Can't return a charactor outside the range of ascii.
            >> >>>
            >> >> because string[index] returns a byte value, not a character value: see
            >> >> ":help expr8".
            >> >
            >> > *Nod*
            >> >
            >> >> If the character at the cursor is> U+007F, you'll get
            >> >> the first byte (in the range 0xC0-0xFD, or in practice in the range
            >> >> 0xC0-0xF4) of its UTF-8 representation.
            >> >
            >> > No, you could get some byte of some entirely different character. Ie,
            >> > on a line with two 2-byte characters, getline('.')[col('.')-1] on the
            >> > second character would return the 2nd byte of the first character.
            >>
            >> col() gives a one-based byte ordinal. [] takes a zero-based argument. I
            >> stand by what I said.
            >
            > Ooh, you're right - I forgot col() returned a byte index, and not the
            > column as its name would imply...
            >
            >> >> The _character_ at the cursor is obtained as follows:
            >> >> let i0 = byteidx(getline('.'), virtcol('.') - 1)
            >> >> let i1 = byteidx(getline('.'), virtcol('.'))
            >> >> let character = strpart(getline('.'), i0, i1 - 10)
            >> >
            >> > Using virtcol() there seems broken... what if you're in the middle of
            >> > a tab, for example, with virtualedit=all?
            >> >
            >> > :echo join(split("áéíóú", '\zs')[1:3], '')
            >>
            >> OK, I didn't think of virtual editing, nor even, it seems, of
            >> multi-column characters such as tabs and fullwidth CJK. However, [1:3]
            >> wouldn't work because the idea is that we're in a script, we don't know
            >> that we're in the 1st, 2nd or 3rd column, just that we want "whatever is
            >> at the cursor". I might do it with
            >>
            >> function CursorChar()
            >> normal yl
            >> return @@
            >> endfunction
            >
            > echo matchstr(getline('.'), '\%' . col('.') . 'c.')

            Again, col('.') is a byte index, not a column. What about virtcol('.')
            instead?

            To avoid clobbering @@ I could save/restore it.

            >
            > does the same thing without clobbering the unnamed register...
            > slightly more elegant, imho.
            >
            >> > is how I would do it... but, is there any real reason why indexing
            >> > into a string *should* be byte oriented instead of character oriented,
            >> > apart from backwards compatibility? It seems drastically less easy to
            >> > use the thing that more people want to use more of the time; and in
            >> > fact some of the snippets in the vim help (like the example given at
            >> > :help expr-8) won't work on multibyte lines given the way that string
            >> > indexing works now. It seems like a place where the cost of losing
            >> > backwards compatibility might be outweighed by the cost of keeping
            >> > things the way they are...
            >>
            >> Changing an existing construct from byte-oriented to
            >> multibyte-character-oriented would probably break a lot of existing
            >> scripts. I don't believe Bram would ever accept that.
            >
            > But sometimes, breaking things is required to make progress. The fact
            > that we're having a conversation with both of us suggesting (fairly
            > complicated) things that haven't worked is a perfect proof for the
            > fact that the current system is counterintuitive and hard to use...
            >
            > ~Matt

            That's no reason for breaking what does work. I don't mind
            counterintuitive as long as it's documented.


            Best regards,
            Tony.
            --
            They told me you had proven it When they discovered our results
            About a month before. Their hair began to curl
            The proof was valid, more or less Instead of understanding it
            But rather less than more. We'd run the thing through PRL.

            He sent them word that we would try Don't tell a soul about all this
            To pass where they had failed For it must ever be
            And after we were done, to them A secret, kept from all the rest
            The new proof would be mailed. Between yourself and me.

            My notion was to start again
            Ignoring all they'd done
            We quickly turned it into code
            To see if it would run.

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          • Tony Mechelynck
            ... Try the function in my next post. If you don t want to clobber the unnamed register, here is a variant: function CursorChar() let unnamed = @@ normal yl
            Message 5 of 13 , Jan 6, 2009
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              On 07/01/09 02:10, Yue Wu wrote:
              > On Wed, 07 Jan 2009 08:25:35 +0800, Tony Mechelynck wrote:
              >
              >> On 07/01/09 00:39, Matt Wozniski wrote:
              >>> On Tue, Jan 6, 2009 at 6:10 PM, Tony Mechelynck wrote:
              >>>> On 06/01/09 12:31, anhnmncb wrote:
              >>>>> Hi, list, as title, if so, why can't many functions
              >>>>> still handle correctly with unicode? For example the func:
              >>>>>
              >>>>> getline('.')[col('.')-1]
              >>>>>
              >>>>> Can't return a charactor outside the range of ascii.
              >>>>>
              >>>> because string[index] returns a byte value, not a character value: see
              >>>> ":help expr8".
              >>> *Nod*
              >>>
              >>>> If the character at the cursor is> U+007F, you'll get
              >>>> the first byte (in the range 0xC0-0xFD, or in practice in the range
              >>>> 0xC0-0xF4) of its UTF-8 representation.
              >>> No, you could get some byte of some entirely different character. Ie,
              >>> on a line with two 2-byte characters, getline('.')[col('.')-1] on the
              >>> second character would return the 2nd byte of the first character.
              >> col() gives a one-based byte ordinal. [] takes a zero-based argument. I
              >> stand by what I said.
              >>
              >>>> The _character_ at the cursor is obtained as follows:
              >>>> let i0 = byteidx(getline('.'), virtcol('.') - 1)
              >>>> let i1 = byteidx(getline('.'), virtcol('.'))
              >>>> let character = strpart(getline('.'), i0, i1 - 10)
              >>> Using virtcol() there seems broken... what if you're in the middle of
              >>> a tab, for example, with virtualedit=all?
              >>>
              >>> :echo join(split("áéíóú", '\zs')[1:3], '')
              >> OK, I didn't think of virtual editing, nor even, it seems, of
              >> multi-column characters such as tabs and fullwidth CJK. However, [1:3]
              >> wouldn't work because the idea is that we're in a script, we don't know
              >> that we're in the 1st, 2nd or 3rd column, just that we want "whatever is
              >> at the cursor". I might do it with
              >>
              >> function CursorChar()
              >> normal yl
              >> return @@
              >> endfunction
              >>
              >>> is how I would do it... but, is there any real reason why indexing
              >>> into a string *should* be byte oriented instead of character oriented,
              >>> apart from backwards compatibility? It seems drastically less easy to
              >>> use the thing that more people want to use more of the time; and in
              >>> fact some of the snippets in the vim help (like the example given at
              >>> :help expr-8) won't work on multibyte lines given the way that string
              >>> indexing works now. It seems like a place where the cost of losing
              >>> backwards compatibility might be outweighed by the cost of keeping
              >>> things the way they are...
              >>>
              >>> ~Matt
              >> Changing an existing construct from byte-oriented to
              >> multibyte-character-oriented would probably break a lot of existing
              >> scripts. I don't believe Bram would ever accept that.
              >>
              >> Best regards,
              >> Tony.
              >
              > Hmm, I think I got the point.
              >
              > btw, I tested your func on a line with "测试"(test)
              >
              > let i0 = byteidx(getline('.'), virtcol('.') - 1)
              > let i1 = byteidx(getline('.'), virtcol('.'))
              > let character = strpart(getline('.'), i0, i1 - 10)
              >
              > Then echo character got nothing.
              >

              Try the function in my next post. If you don't want to clobber the
              unnamed register, here is a variant:

              function CursorChar()
              let unnamed = @@
              normal yl
              let retval = @@
              let @@ = unnamed
              return retval
              endfunction


              Best regards,
              Tony.
              --
              If you had any brains, you'd be dangerous.


              Best regards,
              Tony.

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            • Yue Wu
              ... Yes, it works, but I don t like a function that contains normal operators, I always think that a normal operator is only used for normal mode by keyboard,
              Message 6 of 13 , Jan 6, 2009
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                On Wed, 07 Jan 2009 10:24:30 +0800, Tony Mechelynck wrote:

                >
                > On 07/01/09 02:10, Yue Wu wrote:
                >> On Wed, 07 Jan 2009 08:25:35 +0800, Tony Mechelynck wrote:
                >>
                >>> On 07/01/09 00:39, Matt Wozniski wrote:
                >>>> On Tue, Jan 6, 2009 at 6:10 PM, Tony Mechelynck wrote:
                >>>>> On 06/01/09 12:31, anhnmncb wrote:
                >>>>>> Hi, list, as title, if so, why can't many functions
                >>>>>> still handle correctly with unicode? For example the func:
                >>>>>>
                >>>>>> getline('.')[col('.')-1]
                >>>>>>
                >>>>>> Can't return a charactor outside the range of ascii.
                >>>>>>
                >>>>> because string[index] returns a byte value, not a character value:
                >>>>> see
                >>>>> ":help expr8".
                >>>> *Nod*
                >>>>
                >>>>> If the character at the cursor is> U+007F, you'll get
                >>>>> the first byte (in the range 0xC0-0xFD, or in practice in the range
                >>>>> 0xC0-0xF4) of its UTF-8 representation.
                >>>> No, you could get some byte of some entirely different character. Ie,
                >>>> on a line with two 2-byte characters, getline('.')[col('.')-1] on the
                >>>> second character would return the 2nd byte of the first character.
                >>> col() gives a one-based byte ordinal. [] takes a zero-based argument. I
                >>> stand by what I said.
                >>>
                >>>>> The _character_ at the cursor is obtained as follows:
                >>>>> let i0 = byteidx(getline('.'), virtcol('.') - 1)
                >>>>> let i1 = byteidx(getline('.'), virtcol('.'))
                >>>>> let character = strpart(getline('.'), i0, i1 - 10)
                >>>> Using virtcol() there seems broken... what if you're in the middle of
                >>>> a tab, for example, with virtualedit=all?
                >>>>
                >>>> :echo join(split("áéíóú", '\zs')[1:3], '')
                >>> OK, I didn't think of virtual editing, nor even, it seems, of
                >>> multi-column characters such as tabs and fullwidth CJK. However, [1:3]
                >>> wouldn't work because the idea is that we're in a script, we don't know
                >>> that we're in the 1st, 2nd or 3rd column, just that we want "whatever
                >>> is
                >>> at the cursor". I might do it with
                >>>
                >>> function CursorChar()
                >>> normal yl
                >>> return @@
                >>> endfunction
                >>>
                >>>> is how I would do it... but, is there any real reason why indexing
                >>>> into a string *should* be byte oriented instead of character oriented,
                >>>> apart from backwards compatibility? It seems drastically less easy to
                >>>> use the thing that more people want to use more of the time; and in
                >>>> fact some of the snippets in the vim help (like the example given at
                >>>> :help expr-8) won't work on multibyte lines given the way that string
                >>>> indexing works now. It seems like a place where the cost of losing
                >>>> backwards compatibility might be outweighed by the cost of keeping
                >>>> things the way they are...
                >>>>
                >>>> ~Matt
                >>> Changing an existing construct from byte-oriented to
                >>> multibyte-character-oriented would probably break a lot of existing
                >>> scripts. I don't believe Bram would ever accept that.
                >>>
                >>> Best regards,
                >>> Tony.
                >>
                >> Hmm, I think I got the point.
                >>
                >> btw, I tested your func on a line with "测试"(test)
                >>
                >> let i0 = byteidx(getline('.'), virtcol('.') - 1)
                >> let i1 = byteidx(getline('.'), virtcol('.'))
                >> let character = strpart(getline('.'), i0, i1 - 10)
                >>
                >> Then echo character got nothing.
                >>
                >
                > Try the function in my next post. If you don't want to clobber the
                > unnamed register, here is a variant:
                >
                > function CursorChar()
                > let unnamed = @@
                > normal yl
                > let retval = @@
                > let @@ = unnamed
                > return retval
                > endfunction

                Yes, it works, but I don't like a function that contains normal
                operators, I always think that a normal operator is only used for
                normal mode by keyboard, if write a function, it's better to use
                the function coressponding to the operator.

                This version works fine:

                matchstr(getline('.'), '\%' . col('.') . 'c.')

                whereas this one doesn't:

                matchstr(getline('.'), '\%' . virtcol('.') . 'c.')

                >
                >
                > Best regards,
                > Tony.



                --
                Regards,
                Van.

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              • Tony Mechelynck
                On 07/01/09 03:38, Yue Wu wrote: [...] ... Oh? I have the opposite impression. For normal mode by keyboard, I don t use ... but yl To me, the :normal command
                Message 7 of 13 , Jan 6, 2009
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                  On 07/01/09 03:38, Yue Wu wrote:
                  [...]
                  > I always think that a normal operator is only used for
                  > normal mode by keyboard,[...]

                  Oh? I have the opposite impression. For normal mode by keyboard, I don't use

                  :normal yl<Enter>

                  but

                  yl

                  To me, the ":normal" command is _only_ useful in scripts, in order to
                  run in Ex mode the key sequences meant for Normal mode.


                  Best regards,
                  Tony.
                  --
                  If bankers can count, how come they have eight windows and only four
                  tellers?

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                • Yue Wu
                  ... I mean I prevent using yl from :normal if there is a function :yank :) -- Regards, Van. --~--~---------~--~----~------------~-------~--~----~ You received
                  Message 8 of 13 , Jan 6, 2009
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                    On Wed, 07 Jan 2009 10:55:33 +0800, Tony Mechelynck wrote:

                    >
                    > On 07/01/09 03:38, Yue Wu wrote:
                    > [...]
                    >> I always think that a normal operator is only used for
                    >> normal mode by keyboard,[...]
                    >
                    > Oh? I have the opposite impression. For normal mode by keyboard, I don't
                    > use
                    >
                    > :normal yl<Enter>
                    >
                    > but
                    >
                    > yl
                    >
                    > To me, the ":normal" command is _only_ useful in scripts, in order to
                    > run in Ex mode the key sequences meant for Normal mode.

                    I mean I prevent using yl from :normal if there is a function :yank :)

                    --
                    Regards,
                    Van.

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                  • Tony Mechelynck
                    ... There is a :yank command but it acts linewise. Here we want a characterwise yank, so we cannot use :yank. The function you proposed is so complex I would
                    Message 9 of 13 , Jan 6, 2009
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                      On 07/01/09 04:17, Yue Wu wrote:
                      > On Wed, 07 Jan 2009 10:55:33 +0800, Tony Mechelynck wrote:
                      >
                      >> On 07/01/09 03:38, Yue Wu wrote:
                      >> [...]
                      >>> I always think that a normal operator is only used for
                      >>> normal mode by keyboard,[...]
                      >> Oh? I have the opposite impression. For normal mode by keyboard, I don't
                      >> use
                      >>
                      >> :normal yl<Enter>
                      >>
                      >> but
                      >>
                      >> yl
                      >>
                      >> To me, the ":normal" command is _only_ useful in scripts, in order to
                      >> run in Ex mode the key sequences meant for Normal mode.
                      >
                      > I mean I prevent using yl from :normal if there is a function :yank :)
                      >

                      There is a ":yank" command but it acts linewise. Here we want a
                      characterwise yank, so we cannot use :yank.

                      The function you proposed is so complex I would run much more risk when
                      trying to construct it than with ":normal yl".

                      If the complexity is similar, I use the ex-command in scripts, for
                      instance ":wincmd k" rather than ":normal ^Wk" where ^W would be
                      obtained by hitting Ctrl-V followed by Ctrl-W.

                      Best regards,
                      Tony.
                      --
                      ARTHUR: Shut up! Will you shut up!
                      DENNIS: Ah, now we see the violence inherent in the system.
                      ARTHUR: Shut up!
                      DENNIS: Oh! Come and see the violence inherent in the system!
                      HELP! HELP! I'm being repressed!
                      The Quest for the Holy Grail (Monty
                      Python)

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                    • Matt Wozniski
                      ... Nope. %15c is also a byte index, not a column (which is also counter-intuitive, and brings us back to the problem - that however well documented it is,
                      Message 10 of 13 , Jan 6, 2009
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                        On 1/6/09, Tony Mechelynck wrote:
                        > On 1/6/09, Matt Wozniski wrote:
                        >> echo matchstr(getline('.'), '\%' . col('.') . 'c.')
                        >
                        > Again, col('.') is a byte index, not a column. What about virtcol('.')
                        > instead?

                        Nope. \%15c is also a byte index, not a column (which is also
                        counter-intuitive, and brings us back to the problem - that however
                        well documented it is, even experienced vimscript programmers get this
                        stuff wrong regularly.)

                        >>> Changing an existing construct from byte-oriented to
                        >>> multibyte-character-oriented would probably break a lot of existing
                        >>> scripts. I don't believe Bram would ever accept that.
                        >>
                        >> But sometimes, breaking things is required to make progress. The fact
                        >> that we're having a conversation with both of us suggesting (fairly
                        >> complicated) things that haven't worked is a perfect proof for the
                        >> fact that the current system is counterintuitive and hard to use...
                        >
                        > That's no reason for breaking what does work. I don't mind
                        > counterintuitive as long as it's documented.

                        See above. If no one can remember how to use it, or the workarounds
                        to make it work are worth more trouble to the author than the trouble
                        of not having it work on multibyte input, I'd say that it _doesn't_
                        work as is.

                        In fact, I'd argue that having string indexing be byte-oriented after
                        multibyte was added was a regression that broke things that did work:
                        before, getline('.')[col('.')-1] was a valid way to get the character
                        under the cursor, and afterwards it was not. Changing this behavior
                        would probably break very few scripts, since I doubt most scripters
                        are defensive about doing it correctly, and would mean that all the
                        broken code that already exists, and even the code that was written
                        before proper multibyte support was added (I believe it was added
                        after vimscript, right?), would continue to work *unless* it was
                        written intentionally to work around this issue. And I think that
                        authors who knew enough to work around this would, by and large, be
                        happy to see it fixed. I think that the advantages of having new
                        scripts work the way that they should, instead of the way that they
                        do, would greatly outweigh the disadvantages of breaking scripts
                        depending on the broken behavior. But, Bram's opinion is the final
                        answer, so we'll see if he weighs in.

                        ~Matt

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