Tab autocomplete behavior in tables

Paul A. Rubin parubin73 at
Tue Dec 1 01:08:44 UTC 2020

On 11/30/20 6:02 PM, Scott Kostyshak wrote:
> On Mon, Nov 30, 2020 at 05:45:59PM -0500, Paul A. Rubin wrote:
>> On 11/30/20 5:13 PM, Scott Kostyshak wrote:
>> Scott: Perhaps you can alleviate my confusion here.
> Thanks for joining the conversation, Paul. It seems we have a mystery.
>> I use the CUA bind file
>> (with a couple of tweaks) and have the same binding for Tab that you listed.
>> In the preferences dialog, tab completion is on for math mode and off for
>> text mode.
> Just to be clear, I think you mean *automatic* completion is on for
> math mode and off for text mode. It took me a while to understand the
> distinction.
>> In a math inset, if I type something like \right and start
>> playing with the tab key, it does various completion tasks. If I'm not part
>> way into a LaTeX command (but, say, in an align* environment), tabbing moves
>> from cell to cell.
>> In a text table, Tab moves from cell to cell, period. I do *not* under any
>> circumstances get prompted to do word completion. (If it matters, I do have
>> continuous spell checking on, using Enchant.) So I can't reproduce the
>> problem.
>> While I'm not complaining, either I don't understand the problem or
>> you and Maria both failed to appease some digital deity with whom I am
>> apparently on good terms.
> Well shoot, I was hoping it was the opposite---that some deity was doing me a favor by trying to help with completion, and all I would have to do is piss them off. Gaining their favor seems much more challenging.
>> This is on Linux Mint 20, so behavior should be the same as on Ubuntu Focal.
> Interesting differences. If in preferences you turn automatic completion on for text, does that change anything? If not, it might just be that completion in text mode is (conveniently) broken for you.
> Scott
As it turns out, I can reproduce the behavior using Maria's example. 
Apparently I just did not have enough surrounding text in previous 
attempts ... and apparently I've lived a charmed life using tables so far.

An interesting related behavior has to do with the escape key. In other 
programs (such as programming IDEs), if I get autocompletion hints I 
don't want, I typically hit the escape key to get rid of them. So, 
having reproduced the problem with Maria's help, my instinct was to hit 
Esc and then Tab ... except Esc boots me out of the table. I can 
understand the logic (sort of), but I wonder if there is a way to 
repurpose the escape key to just stop hints without moving the cursor?

In any case, perhaps the input completion settings for text should have 
one more option that turns off tab completions entirely in the text (but 
not in math mode).


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