If you want to change the code in
multiply-by-seven, just rewrite
it. To install the new version in place of the old one, evaluate the
function definition again. This is how you modify code in Emacs. It is
As an example, you can change the
multiply-by-seven function to
add the number to itself seven times instead of multiplying the number
by seven. It produces the same answer, but by a different path. At
the same time, we will add a comment to the code; a comment is text
that the Lisp interpreter ignores, but that a human reader may find
useful or enlightening. The comment is that this is the “second
(defun multiply-by-seven (number) ; Second version. "Multiply NUMBER by seven." (+ number number number number number number number))
The comment follows a semicolon, ‘;’. In Lisp, everything on a line that follows a semicolon is a comment. The end of the line is the end of the comment. To stretch a comment over two or more lines, begin each line with a semicolon.
See Beginning a .emacs File, and Comments in The GNU Emacs Lisp Reference Manual, for more about comments.
You can install this version of the
multiply-by-seven function by
evaluating it in the same way you evaluated the first function: place
the cursor after the last parenthesis and type C-x C-e.
In summary, this is how you write code in Emacs Lisp: you write a function; install it; test it; and then make fixes or enhancements and install it again.