git clone 'git://'

Alert is a Growl-workalike for Emacs which uses a common notification interface and multiple, selectable “styles”, whose use is fully customizable by the user.

For module writers

Just use alert instead of message as follows:

(require 'alert)

;; This is the most basic form usage
(alert "This is an alert")

;; You can adjust the severity for more important messages
(alert "This is an alert" :severity 'high)

;; Or decrease it for purely informative ones
(alert "This is an alert" :severity 'trivial)

;; Alerts can have optional titles.  Otherwise, the title is the
;; buffer-name of the (current-buffer) where the alert originated.
(alert "This is an alert" :title "My Alert")

;; Further, alerts can have categories.  This allows users to
;; selectively filter on them.
(alert "This is an alert" :title "My Alert" :category 'debug)

For users

For the user, there are several variables to control when and how alerts are presented. By default, they appear in the minibuffer much the same as a normal Emacs message. But there are many more possibilities:

Programmatically adding rules

Users can also programmatically add configuration rules, in addition to customizing alert-user-configuration. Here is one that the author currently uses with ERC, so that the fringe gets colored whenever people chat on BitlBee:

(alert-add-rule :status   '(buried visible idle)
                :severity '(moderate high urgent)
                :mode     'erc-mode
                #'(lambda (info)
                    (string-match (concat "\\`[^&].*@BitlBee\\'")
                #'(lambda (info)
                    ;; If the buffer is buried, or the user has been
                    ;; idle for `alert-reveal-idle-time' seconds,
                    ;; make this alert persistent.  Normally, alerts
                    ;; become persistent after
                    ;; `alert-persist-idle-time' seconds.
                    (memq (plist-get info :status) '(buried idle)))
                :style 'fringe
                :continue t)

Builtin alert styles

There are several builtin styles, and it is trivial to create new ones. The builtins are:

| Name | Summary | | ————- | —————————————————————— | | fringe | Changes the current frame's fringe background color | | gntp | Uses gntp, it requires gntp.el | | growl | Uses Growl on OS X, if growlnotify is on the PATH | | ignore | Ignores the alert entirely | | libnotify | Uses libnotify if notify-send is on the PATH | | log | Logs the alert text to Alerts, with a timestamp | | message | Uses the Emacs message facility | | notifications | Uses notifications library via D-Bus | | notifier | Uses terminal-notifier on OS X, if it is on the PATH | | toaster | Use the toast notification system |

Defining new styles

To create a new style, you need to at least write a notifier, which is a function that receives the details of the alert. These details are given in a plist which uses various keyword to identify the parts of the alert. Here is a prototypical style definition:

(alert-define-style 'style-name :title "My Style's title"
                    (lambda (info)
                      ;; The message text is :message
                      (plist-get info :message)
                      ;; The :title of the alert
                      (plist-get info :title)
                      ;; The :category of the alert
                      (plist-get info :category)
                      ;; The major-mode this alert relates to
                      (plist-get info :mode)
                      ;; The buffer the alert relates to
                      (plist-get info :buffer)
                      ;; Severity of the alert.  It is one of:
                      ;;   `urgent'
                      ;;   `high'
                      ;;   `moderate'
                      ;;   `normal'
                      ;;   `low'
                      ;;   `trivial'
                      (plist-get info :severity)
                      ;; Whether this alert should persist, or fade away
                      (plist-get info :persistent)
                      ;; Data which was passed to `alert'.  Can be
                      ;; anything.
                      (plist-get info :data))

                    ;; Removers are optional.  Their job is to remove
                    ;; the visual or auditory effect of the alert.
                    (lambda (info)
                      ;; It is the same property list that was passed to
                      ;; the notifier function.