Re: Scripting in Gnome

On Fri, 2004-01-30 at 08:43, Bill Haneman wrote:

> Hey :-)
> We have this already, via the python bindings for at-spi.  Us accessibility and 
> AT-SPI folks have been focussing on accessibility-specific needs, but it's 
> really amazing what can be done with python and at-spi - and how easily it can 
> be done.  You can load scripts at runtime too, to manipulate all sorts of desktop 
> objects.  For instance, in addition to listening to events and querying objects, 
> you can
> * focus objects and generate device events
> * programmatically edit text, perform selections and change attributes;
> * activate all the desktop GUI objects and widgets
> * make selections in tables, trees, lists, and comboboxes
> etc.
> And it's already built into the apps!  In the cases where this doesn't already work as desired, it's due to implementation bugs/omissions in gail or the application's atk support, which need to get fixed for accessibility reasons anyhow.  Since it's an accessibility requirement that a user of an assistive technology be able to do every operation on the desktop from the AT, it means that all those operations are available via at-spi and at-spi's python bindings.
> We just need some folks to start writing the scripts and clients, the tools are there.  It's just that nobody is taking advantage of this capability yet, outside of GOK and gnopernicus.

Given my weak understanding of this, I'm seeing a lot of shortcomings:

 - can only access what's in the UI, which may not reflect the full
range of features available or necessary
 - may be subject to UI changes, meaning that the script interface's
API/ABI is now bound to the UI
 - querying information could be very difficult (assuming that info is
even *in* the UI), as the script may have to check around dozens of
widgets to assemble the information it needs.
 - interferes with user interaction (has to open the preferences window
to check a setting, for example, interrupting and confuzzling the user)

In short, unless I have a gross misunderstanding of the at-spi framework
(yes, likely) it does not at all implement a system that is truly usable
for production scripting of a user desktop in a transparent manner. 
(that sounded way too much like marketing speak...)

> regards,
> - Bill
> _______________________________________________
> desktop-devel-list mailing list
> desktop-devel-list gnome org
Sean Middleditch <elanthis awesomeplay com>
AwesomePlay Productions, Inc.

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