emacs; was: Re: Reversing word order in Excel 2007 cells

Subject: emacs; was: Re: Reversing word order in Excel 2007 cells
From: David Neeley <dbneeley -at- gmail -dot- com>
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Date: Tue, 13 Apr 2010 09:58:29 +0300

Like Caesar's Gaul, all UNIX geeks are divided into three parts:

--Those who are Emacs fanatics.
--Those who are Vi fanatics.
--The rest of us, who merely want the simplest method to get the job
done and who aren't too excited about arcane command sets without
clear proof they would somehow be an advantage.

Of course, to be honest, referring to myself as a "geek" reminds me
strongly of the old line that "music is to military music as justice
is to military justice." If it is true that "geekness" is a visceral
thing, you might say the colon of my UNIX geekness is somewhat
abbreviated, I'm afraid, much as a patient after a colonectomy has no
more than, at most, a semicolon. I am, however, a rather enthusiastic
UNIX/Linux user with just enough knowledge to get myself in trouble
from time to time.

According to my Emacs fanatic friends, though, I understand there are
Emacs modes for nearly anything--which itself raises many
possibilities. (For the uninitiated, an Emacs "mode" can be usefully
thought of as a plugin that adds capabilities often by transforming
the environment to be well suited to a particular task.)

In this case, I presume that Emacs contains the ability to use Awk
commands for the text processing. It should be fairly straightforward,
though, to use Awk itself.

I would not do a literal "CSV" export, though--I'd want to pick
another character for the field separation since any fields
transformed would insert commas--which might make reimportation into
Excel somewhat of a pain.


> From: Peter Neilson <neilson -at- windstream -dot- net>
> To: "Combs, Richard" <richard -dot- combs -at- Polycom -dot- com>
> Date: Mon, 12 Apr 2010 14:26:24 -0400
> Subject:
> Richard Combs wrote:
>> Sorry, but there's simply no way to automate this.
> I'd output to a csv file and write emacs macros to do the correction, then re-import the csv. It'd be worth it to find someone who already has emacs built into his fingers. (I'm one, of course, but there are others.) The "programming" in emacs is trivial. Well, "trivial".

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