A while ago I started to learn Emacs Lisp, and it has been a surprising journey. It has also been an enjoyable journey.

I wouldn’t say that its been an easy, though. There is a ton of elisp out there, and lots of guides to programming in Emacs.

The thing is, I think Emacs is important. To me, Emacs is the best computing environment to live in that is available today.

Plus, it is only getting better. With the release of the Emacs Lisp Package Archive, the community has a sane, standard way to distribute and manage the Elisp packages in use.

So, I’m create a “guidebook” to help. I hope to keep it as brief and as enjoyable as possible. Some people seem to like the read-the-whole-manual approach, but I don’t. I think concise, clear, directed guides are what our future hackers need.

Its going to be free / open source. For now, I’m just going to prototype it over my Journal. I look at blogging as exploratory book-writing anyway, so it makes perfect sense.

I’ll update this page with links to new content as it becomes available, but if you would like to see content as it comes out, subscribe via RSS, or follow me on twitter.

Thanks for reading,


Why you should learn Emacs Lisp is a brief summary of the reasons Emacs Lisp is actually better than you probably think, and worth your time to learn.

Lisp Essentials covers the basics of lisp, if you are completely unfamiliar with any Lisp. I assume that you are smart and can already program well, but Lisp is a rather strange programming language. Think of this as “chapter zero”.

Emacs Documentation is an introduction to emacs self-documenting features. Use it to get started quickly with Emacs documentation system.