At the Helm

Today, I began trying to make the most of Emacs. Mainly, this just means activating the packages that I’ve already installed. I’ve noticed that, even when using the Emacs package manager, with Melpa added, packages don’t always get “enabled” and configured to work. Some of them require that you do (require package-name) in your .emacs.el file. So, I went through the list of packages, and one by one read their Github page to see how to configure them. It’s slightly annoying, yes, but I’ve gotten a bit out of it.

First, I found out a lot more about the extra Org-mode blocks and links added with a package. I don’t remember the name now. And then, I found a few packages that I didn’t need upon further inspection, so I got rid of those. And then, I started hitting some big gold mines.

LSP Mode

LSP (Language Server Protocol), is basically an IDE-like bundle of code checkers, refactoring mechanisms, and documentation things that brings IDE’s to your text editor. Or something. All I really care about is that it brings VS Code like functionality to Emacs. And, there’s a Grammarly extension! The only problem is that when I load LSP mode, afterwards, Emacspeak reads a little extra info each time I switch buffers, like there’s still another frame there or something.

So, I plan on using that mainly with Markdown files, although Grammarly doesn’t seem to like filled paragraphs, and I hate unfilled paragraphs, although I can deal with it when working with Gemini. Ah well, maybe I’ll just turn on visual-line-mode everywhere. I don’t know. At least it’s not like VS Code, where the screen reader cannot read visual lines and only reads logical lines. Emacspeak handles visual lines by playing a sound when the next logical line is reached, but speaks each visual line as I arrow or use C-n or C-p.


Helm is a completion package. It’s really great how Emacspeak works with it, and I can just type to narrow things down, and not needing to type, then tab, then type, all that. And, unlike the mini-buffer, I can perform many actions on the thing at point, not just pressing Enter to activate. It’s really great, and I’ll definitely incorporate this into my workflow.


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