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Re: `git status` output is very misleading after a merge on a "detached HEAD"

- a bit late in providing a comment..

From: "Michael J Gruber" <git@xxxxxxxxx>
Ævar Arnfjörð Bjarmason venit, vidit, dixit 12.04.2017 14:18:
On Wed, Apr 12, 2017 at 7:43 AM, Michael J Gruber <git@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:
Am 11. April 2017 22:40:14 MESZ schrieb "Ævar Arnfjörð Bjarmason"
On Tue, Apr 11, 2017 at 5:13 PM, Enis Bayramoğlu
HEAD detached from origin/master 1 commit ago,

In lieu of that, which would need some of the rev-list machinery to be
invoked on every git-status, I wonder if just saying "HEAD detached &
diverged from origin/master" wouldn't be clearer:

diff --git a/wt-status.c b/wt-status.c
index 308cf3779e..79c8cfd1cf 100644
--- a/wt-status.c
+++ b/wt-status.c
@@ -1542,7 +1542,7 @@ static void wt_longstatus_print(struct wt_status
                               if (state.detached_at)
                                     on_what = _("HEAD detached at ");
-                                       on_what = _("HEAD detached from
+                                       on_what = _("HEAD detached &
diverged from ");
                       } else {
                               branch_name = "";
                          on_what = _("Not currently on any branch.");

No way. That would reduce the information that we give.

How does it reduce the information we give? Maybe I've missed
something about what "from" means here, as opposed to "at", but it
seems to me to mean the same thing as "diverged" by definition, i.e.
we detached from the branch but we diverged from it.

No, "at" means we're still at that commit - detached but not diverged.
"from" means we only started from that commit, but are not at it any more.

Saying "diverged"
just makes it clearer, how does it reduce the information we give?

I misread your patch on my mobile phone, sorry. I thought you meant to
replace both "at" and "from" by "diverged from" because you considered
them synonymous.

But your patch touches just the" from" case and emphasizes the "diverge"
aspect, which is fine, of course.

Note that the difference between from and at is also: are there commits
that we could lose when we switch away, that is: that git checkout would
warn us about?

Right, but I don't see how that's in any way conflicting or mutually
exclusive with saying before hand that we've diverged from the branch.

Maybe improve the doc instead?

I think that the doc should highlight the subtelty implied by the at/from
distinction. Especially as users may reasonably think that they are detached from a branch, and not see the distinction.

Aside from whether my patch makes any sense, the solution to a UX
issue really can't be "oh this just needs to be documented". For every
user who's confused by some interface we provide a *tiny* minority of
them go and exhaustively read the docs for an explanation, will just
remain confused.

I think saying from v.s. at is way too subtle, I for one have been
missing it for years until this thread, that's bad UX, git's also used
by a lot of non-native English speakers who may not at all get the
subtle difference between at and from in this context, or if they do
think the UI is using that subtlety to tell them something.

As a native UK English speaker (living in Scotland), I focus on the verb
'detached' rather than the at/from distinction. There are many local
dialects and variants so that is only who are taught English as she is wrote
who tend to notice the fine distinctions. (There are many fine Scottish
words which are outwith RP English).

At least if the man page indicated the distinction folks would notice
sooner - they rarely get to see the distinction side by side in the terminal

Well, we have to find the right balance between clarity and brevity - an
interface that is too chatty is a nightmare. That's why I suggested both
doc changes and additional information.

What do you think about the ahead/behind info as suggested? That should
be more informative both qualitatively (something diverged) and
quantitatively (by how much).