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When I try to start emacs in the console on my Snow Leopard machine I get the following:

emacs: Cannot open termcap database file

But if I start screen first, then emacs does start, but I get the following error message:

Error in init file: error: "Unknown keyword :risky"

I installed emacs using homebrew.

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The risky is a keyword for defcustom, which was added in Emacs 23.1 (see NEWS.23.1). So, either upgrade your Mac's Emacs, download a newer version of custom (may not be possible at this point), or remove the starter kit by commenting out (require 'package) in your .init.el.

Source: https://stackoverflow.com/questions/5386170/what-is-the-risky-in-emacs/5386504#5386504

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