[xmonad] Default settings: Prompt.hs's defaultXPConfig

Gwern Branwen gwern0 at gmail.com
Wed Nov 12 22:20:22 EST 2008

Hash: SHA512

So, in my never-ending quest to have as short and concise an xmonad.hs
as possible, I've turned my attention to my 'greenXPConfig'. This
definition is eating up a gargantuan 10 lines of my xmonad.hs!

Thus, I'm wondering about people's use of 'defaultXPConfig'; from Prompt.hs:

defaultXPConfig :: XPConfig
defaultXPConfig =
    XPC { font              = "-misc-fixed-*-*-*-*-10-*-*-*-*-*-*-*"
        , bgColor           = "#333333"
        , fgColor           = "#FFFFFF"
        , fgHLight          = "#000000"
        , bgHLight          = "#BBBBBB"
        , borderColor       = "#FFFFFF"
        , promptBorderWidth = 1
        , position          = Bottom
        , height            = 18
        , historySize       = 256
        , historyFilter     = id
        , defaultText       = []
        , autoComplete      = Nothing
        , showCompletionOnTab = False

According to my xmonad archive, 15 configurations make use of the
default in some way. My question is: are these defaults really

I'll take them in order.

1) The font strikes me as a bad setting. I checked it out just now,
and my eyes water at the tininess of 10. It seems to me that a far
more reasonable setting would be something like 14 or 16; but I don't
know whether a 16 setting would be alright for EE users. I feel though
that 10 works out for no one.

2) The color scheme is currently a sort of white-on-grey. It lacks
contrast, IMO. Here I have 2 suggestions:
2.1) The current color values are pretty opaque. Unless you have
color-values memorized, ', bgColor           = "#333333"' is
absolutely meaningless to you. Intrigeri's xmonad.hs has a XPConfig
which looks like:
     fgColor     = "grey80"
    , bgColor     = "grey22"
    , borderColor = "grey22"

The prompt appears much the same, but the values are far more
comprehensible. Even if we don't change the color scheme, this would
constitute a code cleanup IMO.
2.2) I would like to switch to either green text on black (which gets
us bonus hacker points :) and better contrast), or white text on black
- - as opposed to white text on gray. Thoughts on either color scheme?
(Green-on-black would be , bgColor     = "black"\n, fgColor     =
"green" obviously.)

3) Do people actually like the border? 5 xmonad.hss specifically
disable it by setting 'promptBorderWidth = 0'. I confess it just seems
like wasted space to me. It's not like a dark-gray/green/black
background make it hard to make out the prompt against the application

4) Positioning: top, or bottom? I myself am weakly in favor of top.
The configs are odd here - there are ~4 which set to Top, and 5 or so
which set it to Bottom. Even though Bottom is the default.
4 configurations override the config to put the box at the top of the
screen. ???

- --
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