SLIME hints #1 – Meta-. (slime-edit-definition)

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This is part one of the series on SLIME functions. See the introduction for information on what SLIME is.

Today’s function is slime-edit-definition, which has the default key binding of Meta-.

This function is one of the most useful code-navigation tools; with the point at a function call or variable, press Meta-. and Emacs switches to the definition of that variable or function. Once you’ve got this in your fingers you will use it a lot. And since it uses SLIME instead of etags (for example) it works reliably for any definition that was loaded from a file (I will address this in a future post) and doesn’t require any additional tools or configuration.

There’s a complement function; slime-pop-find-definition-stack is bound to Meta-, and takes you back to the place you were when you called slime-edit-definition.