Re: xmgrace

On Mon, 5 Jul 2004, Alan G Isaac wrote:

On Sun, 04 Jul 2004, Andrzej Grzegorcyzk apparently wrote:
Is it not better just to make simple plugin to
gnumeric which can send data xmgrace  and the rest of problem live for
xmgrace team.

I am another user sympathetic to this argument, although I
would prefer to see gnuplot used.  (A number of applications
already use gnuplot this way successfully, because it is
built to facilitate this.  One example: the gretl
econometric package, which includes gnuplot.)

I'll put in my twopence-worth on this. I'm a gnumeric fan, but I have to agree with Andrzej's point that gnumeric's graphing capacities are quite primitive. And the response, that if we just wait a little these capacities will be terrific, without any need for third-party plugins, has worn thin over the several years I've heard it made.

However, I tend to agree with Alan, that if the gnumeric developers were to consider linking to a third-party graphing engine they'd be better off considering gnuplot. This is on the grounds that (a) gnuplot is "standard equipment" on most GNU/Linux platforms, where gnumeric is most likely to be found, while (b) xmgrace depends (as I understand) on the Motif libraries, which are antiquated and not standard equipment on GNU/Linux.

Alan refers to gretl's use of gnuplot. The code that supports that is under the GPL, so anyone who wanted to adapt it for use with gnumeric would be welcome to do so. (Gretl -- my baby -- sends data to gnuplot and gets it to produce a PNG file, which it then displays in a GTK window.) I'd offer to do so myself, but developing gretl doesn't leave much time for other free software endeavors.

Allin Cottrell.

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