[squeak-dev] String & Text

Jakob Reschke jakres+squeak at gmail.com
Wed Jul 13 08:09:12 UTC 2022


Maybe it would be better if they did not share so much of the protocol. So
that the system guided you better when to use String and when to use Text,
separating the responsibilities more.

For example, I would argue that the asText send is misplaced in this
example from AbstractFont>>#browseGlyphsByCategoryOf:select:label:

separatorBlock := [:codePoints :category |
    (('\{1}\\' withCRs asText
        format: { Unicode generalCategoryLabels at: category+1 ifAbsent:
['n/a'] })
        addAttribute: (TextFontReference toFont: TextStyle
        addAttribute: (PluggableTextAttribute evalBlock: [self
browseGlyphsByCategoryOf: codePoints select: aBlock label: aLabelOrNil]);
        yourself) ].

asText could just as well come after the format:.

Later in the same method comes an example, which is not criticized so
easily, where pieces with attributes already applied are inserted via

contents := (('Family name: {1}{6}\   Emphasis: {2}\ Point size: {3}
({4}ppi {5}px{7})\' withCRs asText format: { self familyName asText
addAttribute: (PluggableTextAttribute evalBlock: [self explore]); yourself.
[self emphasisString] on: Error do: [self subfamilyName]. self pointSize.
self pixelsPerInch. self height. isRange ifTrue: [''] ifFalse: [' (selected
code points)']. (self isTTCFont and: [(tmp := self extraGlyphScale) ~= 1])
ifFalse: [''] ifTrue: [' ', (tmp * 100) rounded asString, '%'] })
addAttribute: (TextFontReference toFont: TextStyle defaultFixedFont);

Many of the occurrences of Text>>format: that I saw are used to insert
links in the text template, or highlighted pieces.

So I guess my opening statement is just dreaming without much practical
expertise in the concrete matter. Since Text and String are already
interchangeable in certain aspects, you cannot simply roll back without
breaking lots of things. Under these circumstances I agree that they should
behave equivalently for the protocol that they do share. Otherwise an
existing pair of '...' and format: may suddenly fail if you put asText
between the two later.

+1 for adding symbolic placeholders to Text >> #format:, unless format:
gets removed from Text or the feature gets removed from String again. ;-)

Kind regards,

Am Mi., 13. Juli 2022 um 08:48 Uhr schrieb Marcel Taeumel <
marcel.taeumel at hpi.de>:

> Hi all --
> What are your thoughts on String and Text. In GUI programming, it
> is rather annoying to have to sprinkle #asText all over the code. It's
> nice to have most important protocol shared between String and Text.
> The recent change to only String >> #format: (see Collections-cmm.1016)
> to support symbols as placeholders indicates kind of a disagreement
> in how Text should be used in (GUI) code. Well, if some message is
> not there in Text, it is easy to find out. However, having a protocol
> there
> with different details feels rather challenging.
> I accept that not all protocols are shared between String and Text.
> I do not like inconsistencies of method implementations where the
> message (and signature) is identical.
> +1 for adding symbolic placeholders to Text >> #format: as well.
> Best,
> Marcel
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