[ESS] ... when editing R documents, 'delete' key behaves as 'backspace'

Martin Maechler maechler at stat.math.ethz.ch
Mon Sep 8 09:13:08 CEST 2008

[Forwarded from a semi-private communication in ESS-bugs]

>>>>> "StEgl" == Stephen Eglen <S.J.Eglen at damtp.cam.ac.uk>
>>>>>     on Sun, 07 Sep 2008 22:21:23 +0100 writes:

    >> I have found a solution to this problem: All I need to do
    >> is to comment out line 173 of ess-mode.el, which says:
    >> (define-key ess-mode-map "\177"
    >> 'backward-delete-char-untabify) After this line is
    >> commented out, DEL key deletes forward, the same as in
    >> all other modes.  Does that mean that it was an intended
    >> behavior in ESS?

    StEgl> great, thanks for reporting this.  That code has
    StEgl> probably been there a long time, so I'd imagine that
    StEgl> yes, its intended.  Stephen

It definitely was back then 15-20 years ago.
But in those times, I don't think that the concept
 of <forward deletion>  via the delete key as opposed 
 to <backward deletion> via the backspace key
was as (almost?) universal as now.

I've not used the <delete> key in ESS (or Emacs at that)
at all in the last 10 years or so, 
but because of the changed "universal" behavior,
I propose that we *drop* this behavior from ess-mode {the one
for editing *.R, *.S, *.q,  *.SAS, ... files) in ESS.

Of course we need to hear further opinions.
For that reason, I'm forwarding this communication to ESS-help
hoping to get feedback.

Martin Maechler

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