I really appreciate all of the comments that people leave on this blog. Occasionally, someone drops by and leaves an great comment with an incredibly useful tip.
shell-command and prefix argument
The first tip I’d like to highlight was at the end of a comment by Steve Vinoski. I didn’t realise how useful it would be when I first saw it but now I find it indispensable.
The tip was that using a prefix argument (i.e. pressing
C-u before the command) before the synchronous shell calls inserts the output at point. Without the prefix, the output is (far less usefully) dumped in the mini-buffer.
One thing I use this for is for creating Makefiles where I need to pull in the list of headers and source files. I can now type
C-u M-! ls *.H<RET>
HEADER_FILES=a.H \ b.H \ c.H \ ... \
Filtering ido results
Another thing I didn’t know about was that it is possible to filter ido results. Thanks very much to Reynaldo for pointing this out.