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Finding files in emacs and some bits about package mgmt

Some more findings from my emacs journey. C-x C-f is not so fun when looking for files in any normal software projects. Proprietary IDEs and editors have nice support for quickly finding a file anywhere and of course it is there in emacs also. In IntelliJ I can go C-N to find files easily and in Sublime there is C-P. (Note that C in emacs lingo is the same as Ctrl in many other lingos….)

It seems that there are several ways to do this in emacs. I found a package called projectile that adds project oriented features like this one. To add packages in emacs there is - since emacs 24 - package.el that can be used to get packages from central repositories like MELPA (Milkypostman’s Emacs Lisp Package Archive). I put in some lines in my .emacs file for this:

;; MELPA
(require 'package)
(add-to-list 'package-archives
         '("melpa" . "http://melpa.org/packages/") t)
(package-initialize)

and this gives me access to remote packages via the list-packages command.

Now I have the nice projectile-find-file command available. To make it easily accesible I bind it to M-p with:

(global-set-key (kbd "M-p") 'projectile-find-file)

also in .emacs.

There are loads of more stuff in projectile but you gotta start somewhere.

Also when investigating this I stumbled upon helm that supposedly is an incremental completion and selection narrowing framework. The oceans of nice things in the emacs stratosphere….

UPDATE: also useful is to install flx-ido that gives you better fuzzy matching of file names. Available with MELPA. Next mission - automate package installs.

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