rich text in Squeak
bparsia at email.unc.edu
Thu Dec 18 15:43:32 UTC 2003
On Thu, 18 Dec 2003, Thomas A Petersen wrote:
> Lex, et. al,
> Letâs step back and take a look at a core idea that Smalltalk and Squeak
> are exploring. This idea is a place to facilitate the expression and
> sharing of ideas. Squeakâs rich media support allows expression of these
> ideas using a variety of means including text, graphics, sound, animation,
> and hyper linking. I use Squeak to express relationships among membership
> data at church. It is a killer linked graph processor for doing web
> application design. Itâs a joy sharing in the wealth of talent and good
> will in the Squeak community.
> I would find having some elementary form of RTF file I/O useful.
Just speaking as an et.alite, I want to point out that *my* raucous post
was about the *argument*, both it's style and it's content, not the
conclusion. RTF? Why not? (Well, there are some reasons why I wouldn't
care, e.g., I think HTML, XML, and CSS are more important.) If people find
it (personally) useful, what the heck?
*My* peeve is the notion that RTF is somehow necessary or sufficient to
the "greater" success of Squeak (and the implication that without greater
success, Squeak is a failure). It's clearly neither.
Not necessary: I've never seen a Python, for example, evagalistic argument
that hinged on RTF. HTML, yes (e.g., Zope). Text Munging, in general,
sure. XML, sometimes. But all as text, not *as* rich text.
I take this as prima facie evidence that it's not *required* for success
in attracting a scriptingesque crowd.
(I would have thought that Flash support was a more likely route. Or SVG,
for that matter. There's prolly still time to ride that bandwagon.)
Not sufficient: Well, I actually find it hard to believe that I have to
make this case. Adding RTF support will make the bajillions of Python, VB
or whatever folks switch to Squeak?
Uh...I know tons of folks who are very much by nature inclined to like
Squeak who hate the monolithic environment in imposes (or even just the
Hasn't VisualWorks had RTF support as an add on for ages? Hasn't set the
world on fire (or even the VW community on fire).
NEXT had RTF text widget support from the very start, plus a cool
Smalltalkesque development enviroment and...well...lost. I don't think the
RTF support mattered significantly either way.
Does this entail that RTF support is useless or pointless? Not at all. And
it's, in some profiles, a sane enough project for some people.
If we were discussing whether to include a (reasonably robust and useful)
reader/writer in a Full release, I'd definitely go, "Sure, why not! The
more the merrier". Hard to lose, imho, on being able to consume and
produce more formats.
Oh, and PDFs have a fair bit of document structuring capabilities. Well,
PDF, as I understand it, is a bit like TeX. You can build LaTeX on it, but
no one has done the definitely building.
(I.e., PDF has an object model of some sort.)
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