On Thu, 01 Apr 2010 15:41:03 +0100, David Edmondson <d...@dme.org> wrote:
> Carl, a couple of patches that I'd like you to consider. They are the
> first two on the `dme' branch of git://github.com/dme/notmuch.git.

Thanks, David!

I've got your branch fetched here and I plan to start playing with
it. The feature-set of the branch sounds extremely compelling, so I'm
looking forward to usability improvements from this. Thanks so much.

> http://github.com/dme/notmuch/commit/f86254e4509ed02731aa3eaa8541df1f2d11e400
> > notmuch-show: Add unix and pretty dates to the JSON output
> > 
> > Include a 'date_unix' and 'date_pretty' field in the JSON output for
> > each message. 'date_pretty' can be used by a UI implementation,
> > whereas 'date_unix' is useful when scripting.

With "date_unix" it's easy enough to guess what the value is. But
"date_pretty" is much more ambiguous. I assumed that this would be an
RFC 822 date string, (but then found that it's the relative date that
"notmuch show" is using currently).

I think I'd rather see that named "date_relative", (or dropped with the
expectation that callers can decide how to format dates on their own).

> > A new 'part' subcommand allows the user to extract a single part from a
> > MIME message. Usage:
> > 
> >   notmuch part --part=<n> <search terms>

This sounds like great functionality, and is something I had intended to
do very early after starting notmuch.el but never got around to.

> > The search terms should match only a single message
> > (e.g. id:f...@bar.com). The part number specified refers to the part
> > identifiers output by `notmuch show'. The content of the part is written
> > the stdout with no formatting or identification marks. It is not JSON
> > formatted.

The above documentation isn't quite complete to me. Is MIME decoding
handled by this or not? Also, the documentation says the search terms
"should match" only one message, but what does the implementation do if
more than one message is matched? It would be good to document that as

More significantly, this level of documentation needs to be put into the
"notmuch help" output (instead of the placeholder that's there in the
current patch). It also needs to be added to the man page in notmuch.1.

> The second of these (part) has been the topic of some
> discussion. There's a suggestion that a 'cat' subcommand or
> '--format=raw' option to the 'show' subcommand would be better. I'm not
> particular preference - I just wanted the functionality to use in the
> Emacs UI.

One other approach that I imagined with the json output would be to
simply include all of the MIME parts of all messages directly in the
json-format output from "notmuch show". Does json have any particular
way of encodign a binary blob? If not, should we just have one single
encoding here? (Such as BASE64 within a json string?)

Looking forward to more,


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