Re: What is GNOME office?

Martin Sevior <msevior mccubbin ph unimelb edu au> writes:
> On 17 Nov 2000, Havoc Pennington wrote:
> > 
> > The other disadvantage I would
> > say is that it does add a higher barrier to entry in working on the
> > code, since you have to learn the Abi framework in addition to GTK.
> There are software projects with a MUCH higher barrier to entry being
> considered for Gnome-Office.

Here I'm comparing AbiWord to a component that uses GTK directly, such
as Gnumeric. I agree that an AWT/VCL type of layer essentially means
people have to learn a new toolkit, and that is much harder than
learning the AbiWord framework.

> > But given the strong AbiWord community this doesn't concern me too
> > much.
> > 
> Thanks and it's true. We continue attract many first rate hackers. I
> suspect we'll get a big influx from Eastern Europe/Russia the Far East
> after our next release.

One concern I have about AbiWord is duplication of effort below the
GTK layer.  For example I'm busy implementing
line/word/sentence/grapheme breaking in Pango now. Reimplementing all
the Pango stuff is going to be really unfortunate - I think it would
be a lot better if you guys could share i18n, Unicode, and font
infrastructure with all the other apps. Especially because for people
using the more unusual languages, I would expect Pango and some other
implementation of the same things to behave fairly differently, which
will create problems.

Windows 2000 has Uniscribe which is sort of equivalent to Pango, but
unlike Pango you can't use that API on all platforms. Pango is
definitely being kept working on Windows and is designed to be

If you try to use native libs - selecting Uniscribe, Pango, etc. by
platform - it's going to result in platform-specific code deep in the
guts of Abi's text layout functionality, which is not going to be

Building an abstraction layer on top of Pango/Uniscribe seems
pointless, because Pango is already an abstraction layer for this, and
already will use Windows stuff on Windows.

Of course OpenOffice is not better in this respect, so this comment
applies equally to them.


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