[mcclim-devel] getting started...

David Lichteblau david at lichteblau.com
Thu Feb 22 16:42:58 UTC 2007

Quoting Perry E. Metzger (perry at piermont.com):
> 2) I popped up a Clouseau window, and (being ignorant) tried to do a
>    few things like, say, expanding the bottom pane with the usual
>    modern method of clicking and dragging on the frame between the
>    panes. No dice -- such a thing doesn't work. In the address book
>    demo, you can't tab between entry fields.

It is probably a good idea to focus on specific applications and demos
to make sure that they work well.  (And separate them from those without
practical use or visual appeal.)

Clouseau seems like one application worth that attention.  Perhaps you
would like to submit a patch adding a BOX-ADJUSTER between application
pane and interactor?

In contrast, the address book is a classic demo that typifies
"traditional" CLIM applications, but nobody actually uses it to manage
their contacts, so it receives no attention at all.

>    I recognize that the UI is very much in the image of the lisp
>    machine, but in the intervening 25 years since Genera was state of
>    the art the "common expectations" of the naive user community have
>    changed -- at the very least, it might be useful if there was a
>    short document explaining to a user what the expectations of the UI
>    they're using are (though perhaps ultimately it might be valuable
>    to make the UI feel a bit more like what people are now used to.)

It is probably easier to take those parts of CLIM that work like a
normal toolkit and make them perfect than to take exotic CLIMy features
and turn them into something every user will be familiar with

Take the address book as an example.  Even with the Gtkairo backend,
menus and scroll bars are implemented as native widgets, but overall,
the application still does not look like other GUI applications today.

So if you wanted to write an address book example that looks and feels
more modern, I would suggest building it out of gadgets.  Get rid of the
interactor.  Use list panes and buttons, perhaps even add a button bar.

(Alternatively, you could take the ESA approach and build something with
a look and feel familiar to Emacs users.)

Of course, it is also great to see improvements in the area of the more
traditional features.  Drei seems like one such step forward.  Perhaps
accepting-values as used for the input fields you mentioned could also
use a face lift.


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