Emacs Pages

Pages about Emacs, the best editor ever.

Some Emacs cheat sheets:

Emacs groups:

Emacs Videos and/or channels (I have not looked at too many of these):

Emacs Tutorials:

A few Emacs start kits/configs:

  • Flying Machine’s Emacs config – This is from the author of Clojure For The Brave and True. It is mainly centered on Clojure development, but it also works as a general config. He includes a quick Emacs tutorial in his book. My Emacs config is based heavily on his. My first commit was on 2021-03-13, but I think I have been using it since mid-2020.
  • Prelude – From its documentation: “Prelude is an Emacs distribution that aims to enhance the default Emacs experience.” Github link here. If I were not using my own, this is the one I would go with.
  • Doom Emacs – A popular one with its own subreddit.
  • Spacemacs – Another popular one that tries to combine Emacs and Vim; also has its own subreddit.

If you want to try multiple configs, you can switch between them with Chemacs2. I think Emacs 29 will have a command line switch that will do the same thing.

At some point I will make a list of all the starter kits and configs on the web. There are a lot of them.

The EmacsWiki recommends newbies start at the EmacsNewbie page.

Here is a page from the EmacsWiki on installing packages. You can also find the command for the list-packages buffer on this page.

There are some galleries of Emacs themes: One by someone named Pawel Bx, and a site called “Emacs Themes.”

A cheat sheet on ParEdit. Here is another one on EmacsWiki. A page with notes on ParEdit. Another page with notes. To enclose an s-expression in parentheses, use M-x paredit-wrap-round. To eliminate parentheses but keep what is inside, use M-x paredit-splice-sexp just inside the parenthesis you want to eliminate, to the right of the first element. According to the cheat sheet, you can go from:

(foo (bar| baz) quux)


(foo bar| baz quux)

To toggle on/off line numbers: M-x linum-mode.

Based on this answer on Stack Overflow, to comment out an s-expression while using ParEdit, go to the beginning and hit M-x mark-sexp, then M-x comment-dwim. I know everyone loves shortcuts, but now I am using a bunch of modes I got from Clojure For the Brave And True that I have decided to go with functions.

One mode I like is smex mode (see this page on the Emacs wiki). This will do auto-complete when you type in function names. Just hit M-x, and it will display the last functions you used. To get what command a key-binding is bound to, use: M-x describe-key and put in the key-binding, or M-x describe-bindings to get all bindings (see this answer on Stack Overflow).

To see your mode: M-x describe-mode RET (C-h m) t

And I am still getting tabs of two spaces, not four.

Posts on this site about Emacs:

  • I have a page on Emacs buffers here.
  • Someone left a comment on Hacker News with a short Emacs survival guide that I quoted here.
  • A few tricks I learned while using Emacs to edit Go (although the commands are not Go-specific).
  • A post on starting Org Mode.

That is all for now.

You’re welcome.

Image of Saint Luke from Poussay Gospels, a 10th century manuscript now housed in the Bibliothèque Nationale de France, image from Biblissima Portal, assumed allowed under Public Domain. Luke’s symbol was an ox; it kind of looks like St Ignucius giving him Emacs.