Sunday, January 25, 2015

Emacs and the Internet

Emacs and the Internet

Truly cold gray and miserable day. It is snowing on the coast but not in the Western foothills. It was snowing in Portland at 9a. A dangerous week for bad weather is coming up. I have been blogging today. A lot has been on my mind lately. And I am trying to figure out how to blog from emacs. It's All Text seems like such a backwards way to do anything. Though it is simple enough when you get used to it, you still have to be careful. I tried two packages, e-blog and gblogger and neither worked. They are both from 2005-2010. Part of the problem with the lack of apps dealing with the web is that web technology is moving so fast that it is hard to keep up. What works one day doesn't work a week later. In Emacs the package weblogger has gone past. There are still interesting weblogs to refer to. The guys on #emacs remind me that not all code works. In fact most code is outdated. So it is not surprising that apps cease to work; they get old, and disappear. When progress is fast, code packages get outdated fast. There are not enough maintainers to go around. Commercial operating systems are getting dangerously limited and unstable. Still I find it hard to believe that there is no way to write a blog post in a favorite text editor or word processor and not easily and swiftly export it to a blog and publish it. Especially when the blog is on Google's Blogger, which is free and democratic. My feeling is that what little serious thinking that is happening and getting published or will be in the future published in most of this century will happen on the web. The web is a basic change in the way human beings reveal themselves. There has been nothing like it since the printing press. Even librarians complain about the lack of thought provoking books published in the traditional press. I myself spend more time than I should looking through the just arrived shelves at the library, my most familiar haunt. Most of these books are slick, commercial, popular. Harried and self-involved college professors claim seriousness for their books. I would too often debate them on their claim. The classics are always available, or are they? They seem to me as good a place to escape as the movies are. The air is full of high voltage static. A simple reasonable civility based on accurate analogy seems found nowhere. Style overshadows substance. More and more the web is becoming a favorite haunt. Books lie beside my desk untouched. I am writing or reading on my computer. Can't tear myself away. Brevity and variety. I don't know where else to go to find the substance I crave. It used to be an attraction based on novelty. I will say this, anybody who has not looked toward the web for substance does so at their own peril. The problem with most of the web is that the providers, though with exceptions, do not try hard enough to make it easy and open. There is still an attraction to the difficult and obscure that comes from UNIX.

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