Commit a8512676 authored by Reiner Steib's avatar Reiner Steib
Browse files

(Running NNDiary): Use ~/.gnus.el instead of gnusrc.

(Email Based Diary): New. Proper documentation for the
nndiary back end and the gnus-diary library.
parent 52319b0e
2007-05-10 Reiner Steib <Reiner.Steib@gmx.de>
* gnus.texi (Running NNDiary): Use ~/.gnus.el instead of gnusrc.
2007-05-10 Didier Verna <didier@xemacs.org>
* gnus.texi (Email Based Diary): New. Proper documentation for the
nndiary back end and the gnus-diary library.
2007-05-05 Francesco Potort,Al(B <pot@gnu.org>
* maintaining.texi (Create Tags Table): Add text about the dangers of
......
......@@ -623,6 +623,7 @@ Select Methods
* IMAP:: Using Gnus as a @acronym{IMAP} client.
* Other Sources:: Reading directories, files, SOUP packets.
* Combined Groups:: Combining groups into one group.
* Email Based Diary:: Using mails to manage diary events in Gnus.
* Gnus Unplugged:: Reading news and mail offline.
 
Server Buffer
......@@ -720,6 +721,25 @@ Combined Groups
* Virtual Groups:: Combining articles from many groups.
* Kibozed Groups:: Looking through parts of the newsfeed for articles.
 
Email Based Diary
* The NNDiary Back End:: Basic setup and usage.
* The Gnus Diary Library:: Utility toolkit on top of nndiary.
* Sending or Not Sending:: A final note on sending diary messages.
The NNDiary Back End
* Diary Messages:: What makes a message valid for nndiary.
* Running NNDiary:: NNDiary has two modes of operation.
* Customizing NNDiary:: Bells and whistles.
The Gnus Diary Library
* Diary Summary Line Format:: A nicer summary buffer line format.
* Diary Articles Sorting:: A nicer way to sort messages.
* Diary Headers Generation:: Not doing it manually.
* Diary Group Parameters:: Not handling them manually.
Gnus Unplugged
 
* Agent Basics:: How it all is supposed to work.
......@@ -8148,8 +8168,8 @@ Some variables to customize the citation highlights:
@vindex gnus-cite-parse-max-size
 
@item gnus-cite-parse-max-size
If the article size if bigger than this variable (which is 25000 by
default), no citation highlighting will be performed.
If the article size in bytes is bigger than this variable (which is
25000 by default), no citation highlighting will be performed.
 
@item gnus-cite-max-prefix
@vindex gnus-cite-max-prefix
......@@ -12343,6 +12363,7 @@ The different methods all have their peculiarities, of course.
* IMAP:: Using Gnus as a @acronym{IMAP} client.
* Other Sources:: Reading directories, files, SOUP packets.
* Combined Groups:: Combining groups into one group.
* Email Based Diary:: Using mails to manage diary events in Gnus.
* Gnus Unplugged:: Reading news and mail offline.
@end menu
 
......@@ -17878,6 +17899,381 @@ Articles marked as read in the @code{nnkiboze} group will have
their @acronym{NOV} lines removed from the @acronym{NOV} file.
 
 
@node Email Based Diary
@section Email Based Diary
@cindex diary
@cindex email based diary
@cindex calendar
This section describes a special mail back end called @code{nndiary},
and its companion library @code{gnus-diary}. It is ``special'' in the
sense that it is not meant to be one of the standard alternatives for
reading mail with Gnus. See @ref{Choosing a Mail Back End} for that.
Instead, it is used to treat @emph{some} of your mails in a special way,
namely, as event reminders.
Here is a typical scenario:
@itemize @bullet
@item
You've got a date with Andy Mc Dowell or Bruce Willis (select according
to your sexual preference) in one month. You don't want to forget it.
@item
So you send a ``reminder'' message (actually, a diary one) to yourself.
@item
You forget all about it and keep on getting and reading new mail, as usual.
@item
From time to time, as you type `g' in the group buffer and as the date
is getting closer, the message will pop up again to remind you of your
appointment, just as if it were new and unread.
@item
Read your ``new'' messages, this one included, and start dreaming again
of the night you're gonna have.
@item
Once the date is over (you actually fell asleep just after dinner), the
message will be automatically deleted if it is marked as expirable.
@end itemize
The Gnus Diary back end has the ability to handle regular appointments
(that wouldn't ever be deleted) as well as punctual ones, operates as a
real mail back end and is configurable in many ways. All of this is
explained in the sections below.
@menu
* The NNDiary Back End:: Basic setup and usage.
* The Gnus Diary Library:: Utility toolkit on top of nndiary.
* Sending or Not Sending:: A final note on sending diary messages.
@end menu
@node The NNDiary Back End
@subsection The NNDiary Back End
@cindex nndiary
@cindex the nndiary back end
@code{nndiary} is a back end very similar to @code{nnml} (@pxref{Mail
Spool}). Actually, it could appear as a mix of @code{nnml} and
@code{nndraft}. If you know @code{nnml}, you're already familiar with
the message storing scheme of @code{nndiary}: one file per message, one
directory per group.
Before anything, there is one requirement to be able to run
@code{nndiary} properly: you @emph{must} use the group timestamp feature
of Gnus. This adds a timestamp to each group's parameters. @ref{Group
Timestamp} to see how it's done.
@menu
* Diary Messages:: What makes a message valid for nndiary.
* Running NNDiary:: NNDiary has two modes of operation.
* Customizing NNDiary:: Bells and whistles.
@end menu
@node Diary Messages
@subsubsection Diary Messages
@cindex nndiary messages
@cindex nndiary mails
@code{nndiary} messages are just normal ones, except for the mandatory
presence of 7 special headers. These headers are of the form
@code{X-Diary-<something>}, @code{<something>} being one of
@code{Minute}, @code{Hour}, @code{Dom}, @code{Month}, @code{Year},
@code{Time-Zone} and @code{Dow}. @code{Dom} means ``Day of Month'', and
@code{dow} means ``Day of Week''. These headers actually behave like
crontab specifications and define the event date(s):
@itemize @bullet
@item
For all headers except the @code{Time-Zone} one, a header value is
either a star (meaning all possible values), or a list of fields
(separated by a comma).
@item
A field is either an integer, or a range.
@item
A range is two integers separated by a dash.
@item
Possible integer values are 0--59 for @code{Minute}, 0--23 for
@code{Hour}, 1--31 for @code{Dom}, 1--12 for @code{Month}, above 1971
for @code{Year} and 0--6 for @code{Dow} (0 meaning Sunday).
@item
As a special case, a star in either @code{Dom} or @code{Dow} doesn't
mean ``all possible values'', but ``use only the other field''. Note
that if both are star'ed, the use of either one gives the same result.
@item
The @code{Time-Zone} header is special in that it can only have one
value (@code{GMT}, for instance). A star doesn't mean ``all possible
values'' (because it makes no sense), but ``the current local time
zone''. Most of the time, you'll be using a star here. However, for a
list of available time zone values, see the variable
@code{nndiary-headers}.
@end itemize
As a concrete example, here are the diary headers to add to your message
for specifying ``Each Monday and each 1st of month, at 12:00, 20:00,
21:00, 22:00, 23:00 and 24:00, from 1999 to 2010'' (I'll let you find
what to do then):
@example
X-Diary-Minute: 0
X-Diary-Hour: 12, 20-24
X-Diary-Dom: 1
X-Diary-Month: *
X-Diary-Year: 1999-2010
X-Diary-Dow: 1
X-Diary-Time-Zone: *
@end example
@node Running NNDiary
@subsubsection Running NNDiary
@cindex running nndiary
@cindex nndiary operation modes
@code{nndiary} has two modes of operation: ``traditional'' (the default)
and ``autonomous''. In traditional mode, @code{nndiary} does not get new
mail by itself. You have to move (@kbd{B m}) or copy (@kbd{B c}) mails
from your primary mail back end to nndiary groups in order to handle them
as diary messages. In autonomous mode, @code{nndiary} retrieves its own
mail and handles it independently from your primary mail back end.
One should note that Gnus is not inherently designed to allow several
``master'' mail back ends at the same time. However, this does make
sense with @code{nndiary}: you really want to send and receive diary
messages to your diary groups directly. So, @code{nndiary} supports
being sort of a ``second primary mail back end'' (to my knowledge, it is
the only back end offering this feature). However, there is a limitation
(which I hope to fix some day): respooling doesn't work in autonomous
mode.
In order to use @code{nndiary} in autonomous mode, you have several
things to do:
@itemize @bullet
@item
Allow @code{nndiary} to retrieve new mail by itself. Put the following
line in your @file{~/.gnus.el} file:
@lisp
(setq nndiary-get-new-mail t)
@end lisp
@item
You must arrange for diary messages (those containing @code{X-Diary-*}
headers) to be split in a private folder @emph{before} Gnus treat them.
Again, this is needed because Gnus cannot (yet ?) properly handle
multiple primary mail back ends. Getting those messages from a separate
source will compensate this misfeature to some extent.
As an example, here's my procmailrc entry to store diary files in
@file{~/.nndiary} (the default @code{nndiary} mail source file):
@example
:0 HD :
* ^X-Diary
.nndiary
@end example
@end itemize
Once this is done, you might want to customize the following two options
that affect the diary mail retrieval and splitting processes:
@defvar nndiary-mail-sources
This is the diary-specific replacement for the standard
@code{mail-sources} variable. It obeys the same syntax, and defaults to
@code{(file :path "~/.nndiary")}.
@end defvar
@defvar nndiary-split-methods
This is the diary-specific replacement for the standard
@code{nnmail-split-methods} variable. It obeys the same syntax.
@end defvar
Finally, you may add a permanent @code{nndiary} virtual server
(something like @code{(nndiary "diary")} should do) to your
@code{gnus-secondary-select-methods}.
Hopefully, almost everything (see the TODO section in
@file{nndiary.el}) will work as expected when you restart Gnus: in
autonomous mode, typing @kbd{g} and @kbd{M-g} in the group buffer, will
also get your new diary mails and split them according to your
diary-specific rules, @kbd{F} will find your new diary groups etc.
@node Customizing NNDiary
@subsubsection Customizing NNDiary
@cindex customizing nndiary
@cindex nndiary customization
Now that @code{nndiary} is up and running, it's time to customize it.
The custom group is called @code{nndiary} (no, really ?!). You should
browse it to figure out which options you'd like to tweak. The following
two variables are probably the only ones you will want to change:
@defvar nndiary-reminders
This is the list of times when you want to be reminded of your
appointements (e.g. 3 weeks before, then 2 days before, then 1 hour
before and that's it). Remember that ``being reminded'' means that the
diary message will pop up as brand new and unread again when you get new
mail.
@end defvar
@defvar nndiary-week-starts-on-monday
Rather self-explanatory. Otherwise, Sunday is assumed (this is the
default).
@end defvar
@node The Gnus Diary Library
@subsection The Gnus Diary Library
@cindex gnus-diary
@cindex the gnus diary library
Using @code{nndiary} manually (I mean, writing the headers by hand and
so on) would be rather boring. Fortunately, there is a library called
@code{gnus-diary} written on top of @code{nndiary}, that does many
useful things for you.
In order to use it, add the following line to your @file{~/.gnus.el} file:
@lisp
(require 'gnus-diary)
@end lisp
Also, you shouldn't use any @code{gnus-user-format-function-[d|D]}
(@pxref{Summary Buffer Lines}). @code{gnus-diary} provides both of these
(sorry if you used them before).
@menu
* Diary Summary Line Format:: A nicer summary buffer line format.
* Diary Articles Sorting:: A nicer way to sort messages.
* Diary Headers Generation:: Not doing it manually.
* Diary Group Parameters:: Not handling them manually.
@end menu
@node Diary Summary Line Format
@subsubsection Diary Summary Line Format
@cindex diary summary buffer line
@cindex diary summary line format
Displaying diary messages in standard summary line format (usually
something like @samp{From Joe: Subject}) is pretty useless. Most of
the time, you're the one who wrote the message, and you mostly want to
see the event's date.
@code{gnus-diary} provides two supplemental user formats to be used in
summary line formats. @code{D} corresponds to a formatted time string
for the next occurrence of the event (e.g. ``Sat, Sep 22 01, 12:00''),
while @code{d} corresponds to an approximative remaining time until the
next occurrence of the event (e.g. ``in 6 months, 1 week'').
For example, here's how Joe's birthday is displayed in my
@code{nndiary+diary:birthdays} summary buffer (note that the message is
expirable, but will never be deleted, as it specifies a periodic event):
@example
E Sat, Sep 22 01, 12:00: Joe's birthday (in 6 months, 1 week)
@end example
In order to get something like the above, you would normally add the
following line to your diary groups'parameters:
@lisp
(gnus-summary-line-format "%U%R%z %uD: %(%s%) (%ud)\n")
@end lisp
However, @code{gnus-diary} does it automatically (@pxref{Diary Group
Parameters}). You can however customize the provided summary line format
with the following user options:
@defvar gnus-diary-summary-line-format
Defines the summary line format used for diary groups (@pxref{Summary
Buffer Lines}). @code{gnus-diary} uses it to automatically update the
diary groups'parameters.
@end defvar
@defvar gnus-diary-time-format
Defines the format to display dates in diary summary buffers. This is
used by the @code{D} user format. See the docstring for details.
@end defvar
@defvar gnus-diary-delay-format-function
Defines the format function to use for displaying delays (remaining
times) in diary summary buffers. This is used by the @code{d} user
format. There are currently built-in functions for English and French;
you can also define your own. See the docstring for details.
@end defvar
@node Diary Articles Sorting
@subsubsection Diary Articles Sorting
@cindex diary articles sorting
@cindex diary summary lines sorting
@findex gnus-summary-sort-by-schedule
@findex gnus-thread-sort-by-schedule
@findex gnus-article-sort-by-schedule
@code{gnus-diary} provides new sorting functions (@pxref{Sorting the
Summary Buffer} ) called @code{gnus-summary-sort-by-schedule},
@code{gnus-thread-sort-by-schedule} and
@code{gnus-article-sort-by-schedule}. These functions let you organize
your diary summary buffers from the closest event to the farthest one.
@code{gnus-diary} automatically installs
@code{gnus-summary-sort-by-schedule} as a menu item in the summary
buffer's ``sort'' menu, and the two others as the primary (hence
default) sorting functions in the group parameters (@pxref{Diary Group
Parameters}).
@node Diary Headers Generation
@subsubsection Diary Headers Generation
@cindex diary headers generation
@findex gnus-diary-check-message
@code{gnus-diary} provides a function called
@code{gnus-diary-check-message} to help you handle the @code{X-Diary-*}
headers. This function ensures that the current message contains all the
required diary headers, and prompts you for values or corrections if
needed.
This function is hooked into the @code{nndiary} back end, so that
moving or copying an article to a diary group will trigger it
automatically. It is also bound to @kbd{C-c D c} in @code{message-mode}
and @code{article-edit-mode} in order to ease the process of converting
a usual mail to a diary one.
This function takes a prefix argument which will force prompting of
all diary headers, regardless of their presence or validity. That way,
you can very easily reschedule an already valid diary message, for
instance.
@node Diary Group Parameters
@subsubsection Diary Group Parameters
@cindex diary group parameters
When you create a new diary group, or visit one, @code{gnus-diary}
automatically checks your group parameters and if needed, sets the
summary line format to the diary-specific value, installs the
diary-specific sorting functions, and also adds the different
@code{X-Diary-*} headers to the group's posting-style. It is then easier
to send a diary message, because if you use @kbd{C-u a} or @kbd{C-u m}
on a diary group to prepare a message, these headers will be inserted
automatically (although not filled with proper values yet).
@node Sending or Not Sending
@subsection Sending or Not Sending
Well, assuming you've read of of the above, here are two final notes on
mail sending with @code{nndiary}:
@itemize @bullet
@item
@code{nndiary} is a @emph{real} mail back end. You really send real diary
messsages for real. This means for instance that you can give
appointements to anybody (provided they use Gnus and @code{nndiary}) by
sending the diary message to them as well.
@item
However, since @code{nndiary} also has a @code{request-post} method, you
can also use @kbd{C-u a} instead of @kbd{C-u m} on a diary group and the
message won't actually be sent; just stored locally in the group. This
comes in very handy for private appointments.
@end itemize
@node Gnus Unplugged
@section Gnus Unplugged
@cindex offline
......
Markdown is supported
0% or .
You are about to add 0 people to the discussion. Proceed with caution.
Finish editing this message first!
Please register or to comment