[Annoyances] X-Windows Copy & Paste

Linas Vepstas linas at linas.org
Sat Aug 23 21:35:12 EEST 2003

Hi George,

On Fri, Aug 22, 2003 at 10:15:46AM -0700, George was heard to remark:
> If you can control the app through the keyboard completely then you
> can cut/copy/paste from the keyboard without ever going to the mouse.

But I don't know how to navigate between workspaces or windows using 
the keyboard.  Most of the cut-n-paste I do is between apps, not within
one app.  If you need cut-n-paste within one app, that app usually
provides the editing features that are approppriate for that app
(graphics, electronics, etc.).  (and the semantics are usually a *lot*
more complicated than a mere highlight.) (after 5 years, I still 
can't cut-n-paste within gimp with confidence).

> Also a problem of middle click paste outside of dual mode editors like
> vi is that I never know where the result is pasted, is it at the point where

1) Only pros are gonna use vi; for the masses we have gedit?
2) All the more reason to make sure graphical vi works.  I think one of
   them, elvis?? moves the insert point to where you clicked.

> With explicit paste you first place
> the insertion point and then paste, and there is never any confusion as
> to where the text will be inserted.

Red herring. There is no graphical 'paste' in vi. (Maybe in elvis ??)
Besides, its 'p' not control-v -- this is an app issue ... 

> and sometimes I select with the mouse and press y and then
> p somewhere else.

?? My vim doesn't work this way!

> and can't be quite implemented everywhere (for example it will pretty
> much always conflict on emulators such as wine, where middle click might
> be bound to something else, though perhaps this can be ignored since
> most windows boxes don't have middle click ... I don't know)

Lets distinguish cut from paste.  Its reasonable, to me, to have 
'mere highlighting' in wine to be unix-like copy.  (Since
'mere-highlighting' + delete key works, so this is a consistent

Whether or not the middle-button is already bound is a distinct issue.

Let me summarize my stance, and I think its both non-controversial,
and held be a majority of current users:

-- The conversation sounded like it might break a feature that many
   depend on, and replace it with something clunkier. That's alarming.

-- As long as the highlight-implicit-copy and middle-paste continues
   to work in most apps, I won't peep  (and as long as
   double-click selects word, triple-click selects line)

-- It would be nice to have this work in wine.  Paste seems to work
   already, it seems.  What's broken in wine is highlight-implicit-copy.
   which is the one that consistently trips me up.


pub  1024D/01045933 2001-02-01 Linas Vepstas (Labas!) <linas at linas.org>
PGP Key fingerprint = 8305 2521 6000 0B5E 8984  3F54 64A9 9A82 0104 5933

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