A little twitch I have in X Windows
Every so often, one of the places I read will have the 'what's in your clipboard?' meme pop up. I never take part, because I have a really boring answer: nothing.
One of my little twitches is that I reflexively scrub my X selection
unless I'm actively using it for something, to the point where it makes
me actively nervous to have a 'loaded' selection. In fact, selecting a
xterm and then canceling the selection is one of my little
fidget activities. (In a pinch I'll do it in other applications too.)
In X Windows this makes a fair amount of sense, because in many programs
pasting in the current selection only takes a mouse click. And in an
xterm (most especially an
xterm where you're root), pasting in some
random text may do quite a bit of damage. (The longer the selection the
higher the danger, especially if it includes newlines, but even short
sequences can be dangerous if you're doing something like editing in
I can't remember if I ever blew my own foot off this way, but the mere possibility of it has clearly been making me nervous for long enough that preventing it has become a conditioned reflex. Besides, it goes well with my other twitches.
(I have a related twitch about what window gets keyboard focus if I'm idle in my X session, for example because I'm talking to someone in my office; I want it going somewhere that doesn't respond to keyboard input, so that accidental keypresses don't do anything.)