Nicolas Martyanoff — Brain dump

Eye level window centering in Emacs

In the default Emacs configuration, C-l is bound to recenter-top-bottom. This function has an interesting behaviour: when called once, it scrolls the current window so that the current line appears at the middle of the screen. When called several times in a row, it cycles through three scrolling position: middle, top and bottom.

This has always bugged me because I only need one of the three behaviours, and none of these positions are useful to me. In pratice, I want to focus on the line I am working on, which means putting it at eye level. In my case at roughly 20% of the top of the window.

Fortunately Emacs is easy to customize. As it turns out, recenter-top-bottom is based on recenter which is easy to use:

(defcustom g-recenter-window-eye-level 0.2
  "The relative position of the line considered as eye level in the
current window, as a ratio between 0 and 1.")

(defun g-recenter-window ()
  "Scroll the window so that the current line is at eye level."
  (let ((line (round (* (window-height) g-recenter-window-eye-level))))
    (recenter line)))

(global-set-key (kbd "C-l") 'g-recenter-window)