Sacha Chats with Xah Lee

The indefatigable Sacha Chua has been chatting up a storm lately and has even more scheduled for the near future. Recently she chatted with Xah Lee and discussed his approach to and use of Emacs. It was an interesting chat.

One might call Lee the King of Customization. He, more than anyone else I know, has taken advantage of the near-infinite customizability of Emacs. He's changed almost every key sequence in his quest for ergonomics in Emacs. This is more than just changing a key sequence to some other random, easier-to-reach set of keys. Rather he has worked to eliminate all chording. He does that by replacing chords with a sequential sequence of two or more keys. Watch the video for the details.

I've posted many times about the various helper Elisp functions he's written. One of the reasons for all those functions is that, unlike lazy people such as me, Lee writes his blogs in raw HTML rather than leveraging Org mode or some other higher-level tool. In a sense, that's a bit like writing in assembly code so Lee needs a lot of help from his editor. Happily, Emacs is up to the challenge and Lee has been able to build a custom environment precisely tuned to his needs and inclinations. The result is that he can write HTML as quickly as most of us can generate the same content with, say, Org mode.

Like most of Chua's chats, this one is just short of an hour so plan accordingly. I think you'll find the chat interesting and worth your time. Lee is a man of strongly held opinions, which he is never hesitant to express. Many find this off-putting but I think you'll find that this video shows that he's an engaging and interesting guy. An Emacs geek just like the rest of us.

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