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3.5: The Requester

In various situations, ne needs to ask you to choose one of several strings (where ``several'' can mean a lot, even hundreds). For this kind of event, the requester is issued. The requester displays the strings in as many columns as possible, and let you move with the cursor from one string to another. The strings can fill many screens, which are handled as consecutive pages. Always in the spirit of knowledge reuse, all the navigation keys work exactly as in normal editing. This is true even of custom key bindings. Thus, for instance, you can move to the top or bottom of the list with CONTROL-^ (in the standard keyboard configuration).

As with the input line (see The Input Line), you can confirm your input with RETURN or escape the requester with F1 (or the ESCAPE key, or whatever has been bound to the Escape command).

A special feature is bound to alphabetic characters: they move you on the next entry starting with the letter you typed. The search is case insensitive, and continues on the first string after having passed the last one.

An example of requester is the file requester that ne issues whenever a file operation is going to take place. In this case, pressing RETURN while on a directory name will enter the directory. Note also that, should the requester take too long to appear, you can interrupt the directory scanning with CONTROL-\. However, the listing will likely be incomplete.

Note that there are two items which always appear in the file listing: `./' and `../'. The first one represents the current directory (and can be used to force a reread), the second one the parent directory (and can be used to move up by one level).

Another example of requester is the list of commands appearing when you use the Help command. (Note that even the help text appearing on the screen is handled by the requester---your ``choice'' of a line in the text is of course discarded, but the flexibility of the requester allows to gain in code size, since no separate code is necessary in order to display the on-line help.)

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