Book metaphor for a Morphic-based browser alternative
ssadams at us.ibm.com
Tue Jun 2 21:37:29 UTC 1998
Here's a random idea for a new kind of browser. Each method is a page in a
book, the variable definitions are on a page, the class comments, etc. The
pages are formatted to suit their contents. Any page may be edited, which
affects the associated method, variable def, inheritance relation, etc.
Pages may be annotated (like margin notes) by attaching text or graphics (or
hyperlinks) to page elements or page locations. These annotations, unlike
margin notes, can be switched on or off as desired. This is similar to a
comment system Ken Auer and I once developed for a ST80-based graphical CASE
tool. But back to the book metaphor.
A class is like a section in a book. Small books my contain only a single
class, larger books might represent families of classes like collections or
frameworks like PWS or MVC. A book might also represent a collection of code
fragments and objects, like a collection of workspaces. Other bookish concepts
might be exploited such as tables of contents, index, bibliography, book
shelves, libraries, archives, trilogies, encyclopedia, etc.
The metaphor is stretched a bit when you think of multiple copies of the same
book being open to the same page and then a change in one book affects them
all. but hey, no metaphor is perfect.
Anyway, this sounded like a straightforward hack using BookMorphs with
connections back to the Browser models. My current tasks have kept me away
from active Squeaking, so I thought some of your Morphic experimenters might
like to take this on.
Sam S. Adams, Distinguished Engineer, IBM Network Computing Software Division
tie line 444-0736, outside 919-254-0736, email: ssadams at us.ibm.com
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