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Re: emacspeak on emacs 21.1

Actually, I think there are a couple of minor problems with emacspeak
and emacs 21. Firstly, I also noticed the behavior of emacspeak not
speaking the mini-buffer when you do C-x k - the text is in the
mini-buffer, but nothing is spoken. However, all other prompts seem to
be working fine. The other problem I have noticed is with info
mode. When you visit an info buffer, emacspeak keeps repeating the
message "Node has no previous" when you are in the top node and "node
has no next" if you are in a leaf node with no following node. I first
noticed this problem with a pre-release version some months back and
was hoping it would be fixed by the time emacs 21 came out. Note that
I don't believe this is an emacspeak problem as such. Looking at the
info lisp files for emacs 20 and emacs 21 indicates there has been a
number of changes and the new version of info in emacs 21 reports when
nodes have no previous/next/up etc. Of course, this is a bit of a
problem as the top node or leaf nodes don't have such
relationships. This causes some major problems with emacspeak because
the repeated message in the mini-buffer prevents emacspeak from
speaking the text of the info page. If you are in a mid-level info
page which does have links back, forward and up, things work fine.

I found the easiest way to get around this problem was to use C-e q to
turn off speaking of messages. However, this is not optimal as it
turns of speaking of all messages and you need to remember to turn it
back on when you move to another buffer etc.

Another problem I had was with the meta key - it seems the keyborad
mappings under Mandrake are a little different and the emacs Mandrake
releases has been modified so that the alt key works as a meta
key. When I built emacs 21, I couldn't get alt to be recognized as a
meta key and had to fiddle around with different keys until I found it
was being mapped to one of those funny windows keys  (the second to
the right of the space bar). I found this very frustrating, so I used
xmodmap to redefine the alt keys so that they work as alt and meta. If
anyone needs to know how to do this with xmodmap, drop me a line and I
will send you the file I use. 

Apart from the two above mentioned errors, everything else seems to be
working fine. Of course, the new version has no real advantages for
emacspeak users - the majority of enhancements are very much aimed at
sighted users (tool bars, tool tips, ability to use variable width
fonts, colour under ttys etc). There are some other enhancements such
as eshell and woman (an pure emacs lisp man page viewer) and a few
other things, but not much which will benefit those of us with
little/no vision. 

On a positive side, VM (6.96) seems to work fine and so does w3 as
long as you get the latest CVS version. I'm also using the latest cvs
version (as of yesterday) of emacspeak. 

It is also a good idea to check out the known problems file which
comes with emacs 21. This is a major version update and there are many
known problems, most of which have partial fixes. Some of these are
directly related to running on a linux platform and some others are
more general such as problems with the new built-in handling of
images, sound etc. Keep in mind that as this is a very new version of
emacs it is likely to have problems and as its changed quite a bit,
its likely emacspeak may also have little glitches. My advice would be
that unless your someone like me who likes to play with the bleeding
edge now and then, stick with emacs 20 for the time being and wait
until things settle down. If you really do want emacs 21, then be
prepared to either spend time finding fixes for little problems or put
up with them. 


bart bunting writes:
> You've screwed up somewhere of course it works fine once you have
> everything in place.
> make sure you have all the required emacspeak lisp files in your load-path.
> BB
> Tyler Spivey writes:
>  > it works, but barely:
>  > c-x k says nothing, although c-e m says i am in minibuf.
>  > anyone having the same problem?
>  > i'm running emacspeak version 14.
>  > i'm running via voice outloud, and just upgraded from emacs 20.7.
>  > (via voice isn't my default synth - but i wanted to test it quick so that's what i used).
>  > *Messages* isn't much help.
>  > 
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Tim Cross
mailto: tcross@northnet.com.au
phone: +61 2 6772 5973
mobile: 0412 969193

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