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%SECTION{summary}%In the course of learning how to do Nedit key bindings via the X resources translation table, I came across a fair amount of terminology. This page attempts to record some of that.

Aside: There is more that I should add, and I should decide whether I want to define each word or phrase on its own page, on one page (here), or on this page with pointers from pages named for all the other phrases. The synonymous [keyboard | menu] [shortcut | accelerator] terms demonstrate some of the problem.

The aside poses an interesting question for the evolution of TWiki (IMHO). Ideally, I might like separate entries for each of these, but also have a key phrase assigned to each, like "X related terminology" (or maybe multiple such phrases, like "X keyboard related terminology"), such that, if I wanted to, I could easily get a "view" of all such related terminology. On the other hand, I don't want to assign an infinite number of such keyphrases to each term.

I guess an alternative is to have each of these on its own page, but also include each here. (And maybe some alternate include syntaxes would be nice, maybe one alternate being a way to enter a link on this page but have the actual contents of the link displayed on this page. For example, maybe I could say %nopINCLUDE{"Keyboard macro"}% but the content of that page (hopefully just a short definition, not a long winded thing with examples, rants, etc.) would be displayed on this page. Something (for me) to think about.



action routine

A Nedit function which can be initiated by a keyboard shortcut. The Nedit help topic "Action Routines" lists the actions available to be bound. Note the function macro_menu_command() which is an action routine that allows custom macros on the macro menu to be bound to a keyboard shortcut.

keyboard macro

I use "keyboard macro" to refer to a sequence of keystrokes that are recorded and can then be played back into an application, initiated by a keyboard shortcut. See macro.

keyboard shortcut (and variants)

The terms:

  • keyboard shortcut
  • keyboard accelerator
  • key binding
  • menu accelerator
  • menu shortcut
  • menu mnemonic

are almost synonymous for me.

They refer to a key(press / stroke), combination of keys, and/or a sequence of keys used to initiate some action other than simply entering the normal character associated with that key into the current application. Perhaps in some pedantic sense, key binding is more correctly considered a verb (the act of binding a key (keyboard shortcut, accelerator) to an action) while keyboard accelerator and keyboard shortcut are more clearly nouns.

Aside: The Nedit developers use the phrase "keyboard shortcuts" to cover some things that I would not have considered, for example, the ability to press <enter> to choose the preselected response on a dialog, or <escape> to cancel a dialog, or the ability to hold down <ctrl> while pressing a navigation key (like an arrow, page up or down, ...) to extend the selection. See Basic Operation -> Keyboard Shortcuts in Nedit's help.






Macro has several somewhat different but related meanings. In C programming it is a non-C construct which is converted to C code by the C preprocessor. In Nedit and similar applications it is often used as a synonym for "script" (i.e., a short program in the application's scripting language). See [[][keyboard macro]].



X resources

A (the?) mechanism that X uses to keep track of things like colors, font size and style, keyboard behavior, and similar things for all X applications. Assignments can be made for all applications (lines starting with *, for example) or a variety of subsets of applications down to a single application (line starting with Nedit, for example), and any widget within any application. There is an interesting description of its difference to most other databases [[][here]].

X resources file

Usually ~/.Xdefaults or ~/.Xresources, a file that contains X resource assignments that can be merged into the X resources virtual database. Note that Nedit also has a file .nedit (where) that contains assignments using the same syntax (is it merged into the X resources database when Nedit starts??)

X resources translation table



  • () RandyKramer - 18 Feb 2004
  • If you edit this page: add your name here; move this to the next line; and if you've used a comment marker (your initials in parenthesis), include it before your WikiName.

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Topic revision: r1 - 2004-02-18 - RandyKramer
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