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Re: Plan for discussions

From: David Kastrup
Subject: Re: Plan for discussions
Date: Mon, 14 May 2012 07:55:51 +0200
User-agent: Gnus/5.13 (Gnus v5.13) Emacs/24.1.50 (gnu/linux)

Graham Percival <address@hidden> writes:

> On Mon, May 14, 2012 at 03:51:45AM +0200, Joseph Rushton Wakeling wrote:
>> On 13/05/12 23:34, Graham Percival wrote:
>> >LilyPond itself will remain as a command-line "compiler".  So this
>> >question can be split into two separate ones:
>> >- what capabilities should alternate programs (i.e. frescobaldi)
>> >   have?
>> >- what should the input syntax be?
>> When considering these questions, can some attention be given to the
>> possibilities of "real-time" update to the score output, as the code
>> is tweaked?
> No.  LilyPond is a command-line "compiler".  That's something that
> would happen in an alternate program.

Yes and no.  If you take a look at TeX/LaTeX, the basic situation is
rather similar.  But you still have various WYSIWYG helpers of various
kinds, see <URL:> for a
somewhat dated overview of free variants.

Some of those are independent from TeX proper, but some, like
preview-latex, WhizzyTeX and ActiveTeX interact with a TeX engine
(actually, LyX nowadays has some components of preview-latex integrated
and can offer true previews for a limited number of constructs as well).
Crucial for interactive response of the first two here is the ability of
TeX to dump and restore its current state (create a "format" file) at a
given point of time.  ActiveTeX relies on a continuously running TeX
process that typesets reasonably independent TeX pieces in pipeline
fashion and thus saves the startup time.

I don't see, however, that it makes sense discussing and working on
stuff like that in the abstract.  If somebody is working on a concrete
tool (and I can definitely say that you can consider something like that
a distraction for years even if you already have an existing
editor/programming environment like Emacs to work with), then one will
flesh out the requirements based on that.  LilyPond, as opposed to TeX,
is a living project and one does not need to think of everything in

David Kastrup

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