Re: Abiword & Gnome (was: Re: What is GNOME office?)

And why do not switch to gettext? It would be so much easier for translators
to maintain their translations... Isn't gettext ported to all platforms?
There has been some discussion to do this, but no code. Short story: gettext is *not* ported to all of the platforms we support. Our system (though it sucks IMO) is. Gettext could be ported, though.

There is so much code in Abiword that is already in libraries... Gnome
programs use the libraries. Abiword implements even utility functions by
itslef... is this useful? Maybe it's easier to port useful libraries to
other platforms than to create almost everything from scratch?
True enough. Lots of utility code and libraries have been written from scratch by the Abi team. Examples include Vectors and Hashes. Then again, there is a lot in libraries like GLib that makes it less portable, esp. to non-unixes. When they are ported, they sometimes require additional libraries (say CYGWIN). Consided GThread. Other things like the STL *still* don't work for some compilers. So we can't use the STL either. So duplicating the functionality of a *few* of GLib's classes is the solution. The result is only a few thousand lines of extremely simple code, so I don't think that there's any reason to be complaining... Besides, which library do we choose? GLib? WineLib? Others? I'm sure there would be complaining no matter what route we went down.

Take, for example, Corel's use of Winelib in its Linux port of CorelOffice and how much of a stink it raised on /. because it wasn't "native." No normal windows user would use a win32 program based on GTK if it had its current look-and-feel. We don't want that...

As for internationalization -- gettext handles which language interface do
you want. In Abiword, it seems the only way to select a language is change
manually ~/.Abisuite/AbiWord.Profile file. Not a convenient way.
IIRC, you can do the LANG/LOCALE unix environment variable trick and it will work. We're going to add a dialog for this though, so please be patient.

And if you want to support real internationalization... It would be too hard
and uneffective to write your own Gtk+2 and Pango. No other toolkit gives
you that capabilities. Abiword even does not support charsets correctly, the combobox in font selection dialog with only one entry "Placeholder" prevents
me from using Abiword.
I'll take this under advisement. We *do* handle non-iso-8859 locales in the upcoming release, such as: Russian, Czeck, Chinese, Japanese, and Korean. Perhaps the "lt_LT" locale will work for you "out of the box" when 0.7.12 is released. If you want, you can try out our CVS version (0.7.12 is due soon) and tell me if things work for you.

There is a *lot* of counter-productive talk here. Some people say: "XXX is better than how you do things, and I'm not going to tell you why or help out coding or ask why you did YYY instead of XXX."

This is counter-productive. There are plenty of good comments and suggestions from a lot of really bright people here. Like all software, Abi isn't perfect and could certainly improve. Please just take a little more time to explain the pros and cons of your position(s). Perhaps submit a bug in our bugzilla or post something to our mailing list. It's bound to generate discussion and interest. And as in all OSS projects, code speaks louder than words.

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