GP Line Editor: Readline

In the following, C- stands for "the Control key combined with another" and the same for M- with the Meta key; generally C- combinations act on characters, while the M- ones operate on words. The Meta key might be called Alt on some keyboards, will display a black diamond on most others, and can safely be replaced by Esc in any case.

Typing any ordinary key inserts text where the cursor stands, the arrow keys enabling you to move in the line. There are many more movement commands, which will be familiar to the Emacs user, for instance C-a/C-e will take you to the start/end of the line, M-b/M-f move the cursor backward/forward by a word, etc. Just press the <Return> key at any point to send your command to gp.

All the commands you type at the gp prompt are stored in a history, a multiline command being saved as a single concatenated line. The Up and Down arrows (or C-p/C-n) will move you through the history, M- < /M- > sending you to the start/end of the history. C-r/C-s will start an incremental backward/forward search. You can kill text (C-k kills till the end of line, M-d to the end of current word) which you can then yank back using the C-y key (M-y will rotate the kill-ring). C-_ will undo your last changes incrementally (M-r undoes all changes made to the current line). C-t and M-t will transpose the character (word) preceding the cursor and the one under the cursor.

Keeping the M- key down while you enter an integer (a minus sign meaning reverse behavior) gives an argument to your next readline command (for instance M-- C-k will kill text back to the start of line). If you prefer Vi-style editing, M-C-j will toggle you to Vi mode.

Of course you can change all these default bindings. For that you need to create a file named .inputrc in your home directory. For instance (notice the embedding conditional in case you would want specific bindings for gp):

  $if Pari-GP
    set show-all-if-ambiguous
    "\C-h": backward-delete-char
    "\e\C-h": backward-kill-word
    "\C-xd": dump-functions
    (: "\C-v()\C-b"       #  can be annoying when copy-pasting!
    [: "\C-v[]\C-b"

C-x C-r will re-read this init file, incorporating any changes made to it during the current session.

Note. By default, ( and [ are bound to the function pari-matched-insert which, if "electric parentheses" are enabled (default: off) will automatically insert the matching closure (respectively ) and ]). This behavior can be toggled on and off by giving the numeric argument -2 to ( (M--2(), which is useful if you want, e.g to copy-paste some text into the calculator. If you do not want a toggle, you can use M--0 / M--1 to specifically switch it on or off).

Note. In some versions of readline (2.1 for instance), the Alt or Meta key can give funny results (output 8-bit accented characters for instance). If you do not want to fall back to the Esc combination, put the following two lines in your .inputrc:

    set convert-meta on
    set output-meta off

Command completion and online help. Hitting <TAB> will complete words for you. This mechanism is context-dependent: gp will strive to only give you meaningful completions in a given context (it will fail sometimes, but only under rare and restricted conditions).

For instance, shortly after a ~, we expect a user name, then a path to some file. Directly after default( has been typed, we would expect one of the default keywords. After a '.', we expect a member keyword. And generally of course, we expect any GP symbol which may be found in the hashing lists: functions (both yours and GP's), and variables.

If, at any time, only one completion is meaningful, gp will provide it together with

* an ending comma if we are completing a default,

* a pair of parentheses if we are completing a function name. In that case hitting <TAB> again will provide the argument list as given by the online help. (Recall that you can always undo the effect of the preceding keys by hitting C-_; this applies here.)

Otherwise, hitting <TAB> once more will give you the list of possible completions. Just experiment with this mechanism as often as possible, you will probably find it very convenient. For instance, you can obtain default(seriesprecision,10), just by hitting def <TAB> se <TAB> 10, which saves 18 keystrokes (out of 27).

Hitting M-h will give you the usual short online help concerning the word directly beneath the cursor, M-H will yield the extended help corresponding to the help default program (usually opens a dvi previewer, or runs a primitive tex-to-ASCII program). None of these disturb the line you were editing.