bugGNU Zile (Zile is Lossy Emacs) - Bugs: bug #42419, Replace Zile with Emacs


bug #42419: Replace Zile with Emacs

Submitter:  Reuben Thomas <rrt>
Submitted:  Sat 24 May 2014 09:27:54 PM UTC
Category:  None Severity:  3 - Normal
Status:  None Assigned to:  None
Open/Closed:  Open Release:  None
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Wed 18 Mar 2015 06:54:36 PM UTC, comment #9: 

Looks like there is already a guile integration into zile?

See the guile news item of 2012-02-16 at:


It says: Mike Gran polished his port of GNU Zile to Guile. Shortly after, he released a new version, along with an implementation of Tetris in Scheme that uses GNU Guile-Ncurses.

Links from there:

I'm wondering why you are using instead of guile?  It does look like lua is a lot smaller, so maybe that's a good reason.

Meanwhile, I notice the wikipedia article about zile describes it as if the lua version was already a done thing.  I downloaded the zile source and was surprised to find it was all in C.  So, there's a bit of a disconnect.

Anyway, thanks for writing and maintaining zile: I find I've been using it rather frequently on small virtual servers where I don't want to deal with downloading or launching emacs.

paul r <phr>
Wed 28 May 2014 12:58:59 PM UTC, comment #8: 

I'm happy to deal with this at a suitable point: it seems it's the earliest of a stable release of "Zile 3" or a stable release of "Lua Zile", or whatever it becomes.

Reuben Thomas <rrt>
Group administrator
Mon 26 May 2014 12:10:35 PM UTC, comment #7: 

Oh, I hope I didn't give the impression that I'm opposing any of this.  I fully agree with the logic of everything you've raised... but for the logistics, I'm afraid I don't have the energy to push it forward myself.

If you (or a suitable delegate) moves forward with this however, I will of course be happily right behind you :)

I mentioned the RMS thing only because I was involved in the AutoGen project when exactly what I describe actually happened: Bruce had to add Guile scripting in place of his much simpler home-brew customizations to qualify for GNU dubbing.  IMHO, AutoGen is now a worse product than it was prior to Guile (somewhat akin to strapping a jet engine to a toy kite and wondering what happened to the string in your hand when you first launch it -- but relieved that at least it didn't launch your whole arm into orbit!).  Hopefully I won't need to live through a repeat of that :)

Gary V. Vaughan <gary>
Group administrator
Mon 26 May 2014 10:37:41 AM UTC, comment #6: 

Taking a step back: Zile has for many years been an Emacs clone. I think it's confusing to users to make the name mean something essentially different. Hence my idea to continue with the original "Zile 3 = Emacs" plan.

OTOH we've got something interesting and new here. I don't see why RMS should have a problem with its being in Lua: GNU has and continues to add projects written in languages other than C and Guile.

Since there is code continuity, and since "Zile 3" doesn't really need a web site (it should essentially disappear up its own backside), I'd be inclined to rename rather than start again from a technical point of view, but that's not necessarily the same issue as whether we think the project needs re-dubbing (I'd say, probably).

Reuben Thomas <rrt>
Group administrator
Mon 26 May 2014 10:14:18 AM UTC, comment #5: 

Well, let's say we agree to rename current Lua Zile to GNU Lek.  How do we actually take action?  All our references, urls, the savannah project, gnu.org homepage, free code page, etc etc need moving.  There's probably a lot of email back and forth with various admins and a long wait for it all to come together.

Or do we just kill those to start again from scratch with a brand new project named GNU Lek (seeking blessing from RMS might not be straight forward unless we rewrite it in Guile) and let the project that wants to take over the Zile name do all the running around to get access to the Zile namespace?

Gary V. Vaughan <gary>
Group administrator
Mon 26 May 2014 09:34:20 AM UTC, comment #4: 

I'm not overkeen on acroynms either, but as I thought I could hardly suggest a name-change without offering some examples, and only acronyms were offered up by my imagination.

LEK is my favourite so far.

Reuben Thomas <rrt>
Group administrator
Mon 26 May 2014 03:36:08 AM UTC, comment #3: 

I have to admit that I'm somewhat tired of acronym project names, particularly of the recursive kind (Sorry GNU!)... I'd rather try to home in on something (a) memorable (b) descriptive.  Not meaning to reject your suggestions out of hand though.  Here's a few more:

gluon text editor: gluons hold bits of matter together
blunderbus text editor: a scattershot editor you can customize
editorkit: simple, descriptive
prototype: catchy play on words, somewhat memorable

and violating my own avoiding acronyms axiom:

LEK: Lua Editor Kit, and Thai for "small" :)

Also the first letter in the Thai spelling of lek (เล็ก) is `lor ling` (ล) or monkey, so we get a built in mascot/logo -- the middle of those three symbols really is the first letter, because of the way Thai vowels change depending on their position relative to the initial consonant of a syllable.

Gary V. Vaughan <gary>
Group administrator
Mon 26 May 2014 12:02:17 AM UTC, comment #2: 

I am suggesting renaming Zile entirely, as you say, but not so that there can be a whole new project built from Emacs components (though a small project may be necessary); but rather so that the name, as used e.g. in distributions, can be folded into Emacs, so that Zile ends up as nothing more than an alias. So maybe that's a "yes"?

I agree that first we need a name, but HHCIB?

ALEF: A Lua Editor Framework (hmm, probably too many ALEFs already)

LEF: Lightweight/Lua Editor Framework

YEL: Your Editor(')s in Lua!

Reuben Thomas <rrt>
Group administrator
Sun 25 May 2014 04:01:40 PM UTC, comment #1: 

I'm not sure exactly where you're going here... so please correct me if I have the wrong end of the stick :)

Are you proposing renaming Lua Zile entirely away from the ZILE backronym to make room for a whole new Zile project built from actual Emacs components but optimized for size?  If so, that's fine with me... since there hasnt been a real release from the Lua Zile branch yet, and may not be for a while if I keep heading down rabbit holes with stdlib, luaposix etc ;) Be we first need to come up with a good name for Lua Zile.

Gary V. Vaughan <gary>
Group administrator
Sat 24 May 2014 09:27:54 PM UTC, original submission:  

I have long suggested that Zile 3.0 should be Emacs. In Zile's original sense, as an Emacs clone, I suggest this is still the case. What remains to be done is to get a reasonably slim-line build of Emacs (a single binary no more than a couple of Mb).

At that point, there's a difficulty: those who continue to want Zile Is Lossy Emacs would prefer it to point to a suitable invocation of Emacs (I'm thinking an emacs-tiny package in Debian, like vim-tiny). Should Zile Implements Lua Editors be renamed? Especially as it no longer primarily provides a binary called Zile…

Reuben Thomas <rrt>
Group administrator


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